Jane Humphries is Emeritus Professor of Economic History and Fellow of All Souls College at the University of Oxford, and a Centennial Chair in the Department of Economic History at the London School of Economics.
Her interests include labour markets, industrialisation and the links between the family and the economy. She has published extensively on gender, the family and the history of women's work, and is also interested in the causes and consequences of economic growth and structural change. Her 2010 book, Childhood and Child Labour in the British Industrial Revolution drew on a large number of autobiographies by working men and used an innovative quantitative and qualitative methodology to illuminate aspects of children's lives which are inaccessible on the basis of more conventional sources. The sources were also used to quantify the formation of human capital and children's economic contributions during industrial transformation using a model of a labour market with child labour. The monograph was awarded the Gyorgi Ranki Prize for an outstanding book in European Economic History by the Economic History Association in 2011 and provided the basis for a successful BBC4 documentary, The Children Who Built Victorian Britain, which she co-wrote and presented.
Jane Humphries has recently been involved in several projects on wages and the length of the working year during long run economic growth. Findings from these projects are available in recent publications in the Journal of Economic History, the Economic History Review and the Oxford Economic and Social History Discussion paper series.