SHiP+ is a network of researchers studying the evolution of mortality and health in port and non-port cities in Europe. The network brings together scholars in social history, historical demography, medical history and historical epidemiology. Port cities in the past acted as ‘gateways of disease’ in the same way that airports today function as hubs for the transmission of infectious diseases. However, inland towns and cities could also present its inhabitants with huge risks of infectious diseases, especially when characterized by high population density and population turnover. At the same time, progress in health was often initiated in and by urban communities as they adopted new sanitary policies and innovative sanitary technologies such as piped water and sewerage.

The SHiP+ network promotes joint research in these long-run revolutionary changes in mortality and epidemiological patterns. The network is run by a steering committee. For all other network members see here.



If you want more information about the network and its activities, please contact prof. Angélique Janssens:


The network makes use of individual-level cause-of-death data for the entire population of European port cities for the period 1850-1950.

Cities and towns being studied

This map shows all urban communities currently incorporated in the network.