Dr Oliver F. R. Haardt

Lumley Research Fellow
Dr Oliver F. R. Haardt

I am a historian of modern Germany and Europe, who is particularly interested in how constitutional and political developments related to the intellectual debates surrounding them. I look at the history of the state from three major perspectives: law, power, and identity. Currently, I am working on the completion of a federal history of Imperial Germany between 1871 and 1918. The book examines how Imperial Germany turned from a loose confederation of sovereign states into a powerful centralised regime, arguing that this structural transformation was driven by an underlying conflict between monarchical and parliamentary power.

Since 2017, I am a Junior Research Fellow at Magdalene College Cambridge. Before that, I undertook my graduate studies under the supervision of Sir Christopher Clark at Trinity College Cambridge, where I was a Gates Scholar and a fellow of the Studienstiftung des Deutschen Volkes. I was also a fellow of the International Max Planck Research School for Comparative Legal History (2011-12) and of the Arts and Humanities Research Council (2010-2011). In 2016, my doctoral dissertation on the federal evolution of Imperial Germany won the Helmut-Coing-Prize of the Max Planck Institute for European Legal History. 

Constitutional, Political, and Intellectual History of Germany and Modern Europe 

I welcome inquiries from students interested in the history of nineteenth and twentieth-century Germany and Europe. 

Historical Tripos, Part I: I supervise for Paper 17 (European History, 1715-1890) and Paper 18 (European History since 1890).

Historical Tripos, Part II: I lecture on the constitutional history of 1848 in the Special Subject "The 1848 Revolutions" and teach several topics in the Historical Argument and Practice paper, in particular "Power", "Nation", and "Time". 


Tags & Themes


Magdalene College
Cambridge CB3 0AG


Key Publications

Journal Articles

'Innenansichten des Bundesrates im Deutschen Kaiserreich, 1871-1918'. Historische Zeitschrift, forthcoming 2019.

'Das Grundgesetz im Strom der Zeit. Entstehung und zeitliche Verortung der deutschen Verfassungen von 1949'. Aus Politik und Zeitgeschichte 16-17 (2019), pp. 10-17.

'The Kaiser in the Federal State (1871-1918)'. German History 34, no. 4 (2016), pp. 529-54. Available online: https://doi.org/10.1093/gerhis/ghw117

Chapters in Books

with Christopher M. Clark, 'Die Weimarer Reichsverfassung als Moment in der Geschichte'. In: Horst Dreier and Christian Waldhoff (eds.), Das Wagnis der Demokratie. Eine Anatomie der Weimarer Reichsverfassung. Munich: Beck, September 2018.

'Reichsgründung als Fürstenbund'. In: Dorothee Mußgnug and Michael Stolleis (eds.), Heinrich Zoepfl (1807-1877) als Heidelberger Hochschullehrer und Rechtsgutachter. Heidelberg: Winter, 2019, pp. 213-44.

Other Publications

'In Vielfalt geeint'. Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung. 3 March 2016, no. 53, p. 6. Available online: http://www.faz.net/-gpf-8e97p