Susan Zimmermann

University Professor
egyetemi tanár
Nador u. 11
Phone number: 
+36 1 327-3000 x 2577
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See Courses, Projects, Theses, Publications, associated with this profile.
“Habilitation” Johannes Kepler Universität Linz (Austria) 2000.
“Habilitáció” Eötvös Loránd University Budapest (Hungary) 1999.
Ph.D., Universität Wien 1993 (history of social policy, urban history, comparative social change).
Academic/Professional Experience and Achievements: 

I am a historian and interdisciplinary scholar who has taught classes on international history, the gender history of Central Europe, welfare and social protection, and courses aimed rethinking history and gender studies from a decentralizing global perspective. CEU doctoral graduates whom I supervised have won prestigious post-doctoral positions for example in Germany, others hold faculty positions in various European countries.

In terms of my research and teaching interests, I am concerned with bringing to bear a critical perspective on the past and present of global inequalities and the unequal international division of labour on key themes in modern history and interdisciplinary studies. I am also interested in developing research perspectives which simultaneously inquire into and integrate the study of class, gender, and other categories of difference and unequal social relations.  

I am currently working on a book entitled International Politics, Women’s Work, and Unequal Development. The ILO, International Women’s Organizations, and the Dispute on International Gender Policy in the 1920s and 1930s. The manuscript addresses a number of puzzles enshrined in international argument and conflict over special labour protection for women, as well as legal restrictions on women in the world of work. This conflict concerned industrial labour policy with an implicit focus on the Northern hemisphere, the construction of labour standards for bonded labour with a focus on the Southern hemisphere, and the connection between international politics pursued in both of these contexts. In discussing these themes, I argue that the clash between legal equality and differential (labour) legislation is best understood not as tension between equality and difference; rather it can be conceptualized as an uneasy negotiation between politics prioritizing the reduction of gender disadvantage versus politics aimed at curbing class and race disadvantage, or aimed at overall social transformation. Divergent political visions regarding the global integration of ever broader strata into commodified labour relations, together with related ideas about social reproduction, formed a crucial point of reference in how diverse actors positioned themselves in relation to these questions. The struggle amongst and between labor reformers and organized women in the interwar period formed an important point of departure for, and foreshadowed core dilemmas of, international gender policy in the post-1945 period.


Co-editor (together with Eileen Boris and Dorothea Hoehtker) of “Women's ILO: transnational networks, working conditions and gender equality.” Publication project in the framework of the “ILO Century Series” (Palgrave Macmillan/ILO), book proposal under preparation, since 2012

Invited contributor, Research Project “Europe 1815-1914. Between Restoration and Revolution, National Constitutions and Global Law: an Alternative View on the European Century 1815–1914” (sponsored by the European Research Council. Working group Paradoxes of Peace in 19th Century Europe), since 2010

Research grant of the Austrian Academy of Science for the contributions on Sozial für sorge und Sozialpolitik [Poor relief and social policy], forth¬coming in: Peter Urbanitsch (ed.), Die Habsburgermonarchie 1818 – 1918, 2007

Guestprofessor for Gender Studies, University of Vienna, October 2006 – January 2007

Guestprofessor for Austrian History, University of Vienna, October 2005 – January 2006

Hungarian Ministry for Culture: Pro Cultura Hungarica Memorial Award for non-Hungarian citizens for promoting and popularizing Hungarian culture abroad, and enriching the cultural relations between Hungary and other nations, 2005

Fellowship at the Wissenschaftskolleg zu Berlin for the research project “Historicizing the global and globalizing local histories”, Academic Year 2002/2003

Käthe Leichter Award 2001 for the study Die bessere Halfte?

Research grant of the Austrian Academy of Science: Austrian Program for Advanced Research and Technology (APART). 3-year “Habilitation” fellowship 1996-2000 (including a period of maternal leave)

Eduard Marz Award 1996 for Ph.D. thesis

Special Award 1992 of the Osterreichische Gesellschaft fur Stadtgeschichtsforschung for Research on Central European Urban History (together with G. Melinz)

CV attachment: 
Academic/research topics: 
International labor policy
internationalism and global inequality
history of women’s movements
histories and concepts of social change in a local-global perspective
comparative history of welfare and social policy
Academic/Research Areas: 

Courses taught by Susan Zimmermann

3rd Year PhD Research Seminar

Theses supervised by Susan Zimmermann

The Making of a Productivist Middle Class. The Students of ‘Commercial’ High Schools in Pre-Socialist Hungary and their Battle for Social Legitimation, Elite Training and Middle-Class Identity
Thesis author: Matyas Erdélyi
Year of enrollment: 2013/2014
Governance and (Under) Development in a Semiperipheral Empire: Croatia, Hungary, and Habsburg Monarchy in Comparative Perspective (1849-1883)
Thesis author: Mladen Medved
Year of enrollment: 2012/2013
‘White Misrule’: Terror and Political Violence during Hungary’s Long World War I, 1919-1924
Thesis author: Emily Gioielli
Year of enrollment: 2008/2009
The Hungarian Pension System, 1948-1990. Welfare and Politics in a Socialist Country in its European Context
Thesis author: Szemző, Hanna
Year of enrollment: 2003/2004
Woman's Question and Women's Movement Among Ottoman Armenians 1875-1914
Thesis author: Khalapyan, Hasmik
Year of enrollment: 2001/2002
Hungarian Family Law and the Struggle for Gender Order, 1848-1913
Thesis author: Loutfi, Anna
Year of enrollment: 2001/2002
Feminist Ideologies and Activism in Romania(approx 1890-1940s). Nationalism and Internationalism in Romanian Projects for Women's Emancipation
Thesis author: Cheschebec, Roxana
Year of enrollment: 1999/2000
A History of Hungarian Psychiatry, 1850-1908
Thesis author: Lafferton, Emese
Year of enrollment: 1999/2000
Restructuring and Envisioning Bucharest. The Socialist Project in the Context of Romanian Planning for a Capital, a Fast Changing City and and Inherited Urban Space, 1852-1989
Thesis author: Popa, Maria Raluca
Year of enrollment: 1998/1999
Architecture, Cultural Politics and National Identity: Lemberg 1772-1918. Entangling National Histories
Thesis author: Prokopovych, Markian
Year of enrollment: 1998/1999
Family Structures and Strategies in Post-Emancipation Lithuania
Thesis author: Pilinkaite-Sotirovic, Vilana
Year of enrollment: 1995/1996