I am a historian of Latin America and the Atlantic world. My research interests broadly include the global history of Latin American commodities and the entangled histories of technology, capitalism and the environment in the Caribbean.
I work at Pompeu Fabra University in Barcelona, where I am a Beatriu de Pinós Fellow and a lecturer in history and global studies, funded by the Catalan Government and the European Union through the COFUND programme (Marie Skłodowska-Curie Action).
I have held teaching and research positions at several universities, including the European University Institute in Florence, the Institute of Historical Research at the University of London, El Colegio de México and Pompeu Fabra University. I was educated at the University Autónoma of Madrid and the University of Cambridge and have spent time as a visiting scholar at the universities of Harvard, Bristol, Nottingham, UCLA, Havana, EUI, LSE, and the Max Planck Institute.
My first book, Institutionalising Patents in Nineteenth-Century Spain (Palgrave-Macmillan), examined the development of the Spanish patent system in the years 1826 –1902, providing a fundamental reassessment of its evolution in an international and imperial context.
I have also published the volumes The Caribbean and the Atlantic World Economy: Circuits of Trade, Money and Knowledge, 1650-1914 (Cambridge Imperial and Post-Colonial Studies Series, Palgrave, 2015) and Technology and Globalisation: Networks of Experts in World History (Palgrave, 2018).
My recent publications include articles in the journals History of Technology, Global Environment, Historia Mexicana, Business History, Ayer, Latin America in Economic History and Economic History Research. My writings have also appeared in several edited volumes published in Europe, the United States and Mexico, such as the Oxford Handbook of Commodity History and the New Cambridge History of Technology.
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'Ever Tried. Ever failed. No matter. Try again. Fail again. Fail better'. Samuel Beckett
Dr David Pretel
Department of Humanities
& Institute of History Jaume Vicens Vives
Universitat Pompeu Fabra
C/ Ramon Trias Fargas 25-27