Case Studies

Lloyd’s Register Surveyors in China, 1869-1918.

PhD supported by HEC.

Lloyd's Register Surveyors in China, 1869-1918. 

In 2019 Lloyd’s Register (LR) celebrated 150 years of operation in China. This doctoral-level research project will assess the influence and impact that LR and its surveyors had on international understandings of health, safety, and risk management, and their broader influences on local infrastructures and imperial cultural knowledge between the years 1869-1918.

The project will investigate not only the social and cultural dimensions of the LR’s historic operations in China; it will also consider the role of the surveyors in the developing western understandings of maritime health and safety. It will do so by drawing upon the comprehensive reports produced by these surveyors, the LRF’s extensive digitised archive, and other archival material from across the UK and in China. The project will also contextualise LR’s historic operations in China and assess the impact of the surveyor on Anglo-Chinese society, and the role the company played in managing health, safety, and risk at sea. It will showcase the LRF’s stellar historical archive and offer new interpretations of the collection while also connecting it to other archival collections and historical contexts on a national and global scale.

The PhD is funded by Lloyd’s Register Foundation (LRF) and supported by the University of Portsmouth’s Port Towns and Urban Cultures (PTUC) research group in the School of Area Studies, History, Politics and Literature. The visiting scholarship in 2023 is supported by Hong Kong Baptist University (HKBU) and Dalian Maritime University (DMU), who will host the student as a visiting scholar. An international conference will be co-hosted by HKBU in Hong Kong during summer 2023.

Applications for this PhD are now closed and a student is in post.