Dickason Professor in the Humanities
Professor of Classics and History
Chair, Department of Classics
Faculty Co-coordinator, Human Biology
Scheidel's research focuses on ancient social and economic history, with particular emphasis on historical demography, labor, and state formation. More generally, he is interested in comparative and transdisciplinary approaches to the study of the premodern world, and is trying to build bridges between the humanities, the social sciences, and the life sciences.
The most frequently cited active-duty Roman historian in the US adjusted for age, Scheidel is the author or (co-)editor of 14 books, has published close to 200 articles, chapters, and reviews, and has lectured in 23 countries. His most recent books are The Oxford Handbook of the State in the Ancient Near East and Mediterranean (2013, co-edited with Peter Bang), The Cambridge Companion to the Roman Economy (2012, ed.), The Oxford Handbook of Roman Studies (2010, co-edited with Alessandro Barchiesi), Rome and China: Comparative Perspectives on Ancient World Empires (2009, ed.), The Dynamics of Ancient Empires (2009, co-edited with Ian Morris), and The Cambridge Economic History of the Greco-Roman World (2007, co-edited with Ian Morris and Richard Saller). He is currently preparing a general survey of ancient demography for Cambridge University Press and a monograph on ancient empires for Oxford University Press, and is editing State Power in Ancient China and Rome and Biohistory and the Future of the Ancient World and co-editing Fiscal Regimes and the Political Economy of Premodern States (with Andrew Monson) and The Oxford World History of Empire (2 vols., with Peter Bang and Chris Bayly). He has launched an international research initiative for the comparative study of ancient Mediterranean and Chinese empires, co-founded the Princeton/Stanford Working Papers in Classics, created the interactive web site Orbis: The Stanford Geospatial Network Model of the Roman World, which has attracted over half a million visitors and global media coverage, and is co-editor of the monograph series Oxford Studies in Early Empires.