History Hub


Connecting past and present

The network first started in 2019 and has grown steadily since then. Anyone who is doing any form of military welfare history, be that related to service personnel and their families, or anything relating to matters of medical provision or social policy, regardless of chronology or geographical location, please do get in touch with the Military Welfare History Network.

Dr Paul Huddie

UCD Conference Organiser

Keynotes from the Military Welfare History Network 2023 Conference

The first in-person meeting of the Military Welfare History Network took place in Sutherland School of Law, University College Dublin on 7 July 2023. The event, which was co-ordinated by Dr Paul Huddie, comprised two keynotes and four panels, totalling 14 speakers.

Papers covered topics ranging from widows and orphans to veterans and pensions and from nursing and hospital provisions to charities. They also crossed geographical and chronological boundaries, engaging with Britain and Ireland, Zimbabwe, Austria, Habsburg Transylvania, and Australia, and from the 17th century right into the latter 20th century.

The conference was supported by several organisations and individuals. These were: Prof Adele Lindenmeyer; Dr Michael Tyquin;
The Centre for Military, War, and Society Studies at the University of Kansas (courtesy of the Centre Director, Prof Beth Bailey); Society for the History of War; Society for the Social History of Medicine; and UCD Centre for War Studies.

Conference keynotes by Dr Matthew Neufeld (University of Saskatchewan) and Dr Ke-Chin Hsia (Indiana University Bloomington) were recorded and are now available to podcast.  

Conference Objectives

The objectives of the conference were:
  1. To bring together the leading, established academics and early career researchers from around the world who are actively engaging the historical developments in the areas of welfare, care and medical provisions afforded to service personnel, their families (partners and children) and other dependants. The conference demonstrates that valuable research has been and is being undertaken by a burgeoning cohort within the academy and beyond who focus on varied regions, conflicts and periods. Research that provides an historical underpinning to contemporary welfare systems and provisions and can not only be used to critically evaluate the same but also has the potential to influence going forward.

  2. To provide a forum where all of these scholars of a distinct area of women’s/gender, social (welfare and policy), legal and military history can come together to present, discuss and debate their research findings relative to this still understudied yet hugely important aspect of the global and transnational social history of the military.

  3. To develop a tangible output from these interactions, through an edited collection of conference essays.

Podcasts of Conference Keynotes

Courtesy of generous support from UCD School of History the conference keynotes were recorded and are now available to podcast. The first keynote at the conference was given by Dr Matthew Neufeld from University of Saskatchewan who presented on ‘Early Modern Naval Healthcare in England, 1650 1750’.

The second keynote at the conference was given by Dr Ke-Chin Hsia from Indiana University Bloomington who presented on ‘War and Welfare in Austria in the Age of the Great War’.

The podcasts of the conference keynotes are also available on History Hub’s podcast channels on Apple, Soundcloud and Spotify.

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