Vaxevanoglou Aliki

Aliki Vaxevanoglou

Biographical note


Aliki (Alice) Vaxevanoglou was born in Athens. She has done graduate and post graduate studies in History in Paris 1 University of Sorbonne and holds a PhD in Social History. She has worked as a researcher in many Research Programs at the Historical Archives of the National Bank of Greece, at the National Hellenic Research Foundation and at Universities (Ionian University, University of Ioannina and University of Thessaly). She has taught Greek and European History (University of Crete- Department of Sociology) and various Post Graduate Programs of the Ionian University (Department of History), of the National School of Public Health (Department of Sociology) and of the University of Athens, (Department of Philosophy, Education, Psychology – Department of Intercultural Education).

Since 2000 she has been working as a researcher (currently Senior Researcher) at the Research Centre for Greek Society of the Academy of Athens. Since 2010 she also has been teaching European History in the Post Graduate Program of the Ionian University (Departments of History and of Informatics), «Historical Research, Teaching and New Technologies». The theme of her courses is “The Poor and the Social Question in Europe: a Historical Approach”

From 2011 till 2017 she taught “Social and Economic History of Europe” in undergraduate courses of the Hellenic Open University (Studies in European Civilization).

She has published articles in scientific journals (in French, English and Greek) and she is the author of 4 books on social history (in Greek).



1- Legal and Undocumented Work Migration.

2- Unaccompanied and Separated Minors’ Migration.

These Research programs have been completed providing a data base of 1500 cases of “illegal” migrants (biographical information). The projects aim at proposing a theoretical approach, with a historical perspective, to the actual migration phenomenon in Greece and Europe. The results of these researches have been and are currently presented in post- graduate courses and international conferences.

Head of Research: Aliki Vaxevanoglou


3- The Poor and the Social Question, in Europe: a Historical Approach.

Bibliographical research which aims to present the historical evolution of poverty and work but mostly the attitudes towards the poor, stereotypes, legislations and systems of relief, segregation or punishment… This research is presented in the context of post-graduate courses in the Ionian University and the part concerning the poor during the Middle-Ages is to be published as a book in 2019.

Head of Research: Aliki Vaxevanoglou


4- Labour Relations and Labour Structures in Greece (20th and 21st Centuries)

Based on Censuses, archival material, and oral interviews this research aims to stress the “singular” labour structures of modern Greece, from a diachronic perspective and within the context of the current economic crisis. This new research, closely connected with the precedent researches is presented in international conferences.   

Head of Research: Aliki Vaxevanoglou



Her recent research interests focus on subjects of social history, such as the Greek educational system, the mutations of work and poverty in History, the survival strategies of the poor, the phenomenon of mobility and migration for work (particularly undocumented migration) in Greece and Europe, family, the petty commodity production system, the so-called informal economy, and employment.  




Greek Capitalists (1900-1940). Social and Economic Perspective, (introduction Spyros Asdrachas),  Athens: Themelio, 1994, 327 p.p.

Social Reception of Innovation. The Example of Electrification in Interwar Greece, Athens: National Hellenic Research Foundation, 1996, 182 p.p.

Greek Gypsies: Marginalised and Family Men, (Introduction Ath. I Godovos) Athens: Alexandria Publication- University of Ioannina, 2001, 184 p.p.

Sivitanidios School of Crafts and Arts, Athens: National Hellenic Research Foundation- Sivitanidios School, Athens, 2005. 300 p.p.   

Poor People and Social Bonds in Middle Age Europe, Athens: Academy of Athens, 2019 (forthcoming)



“Historicity of Childhood and Youth” (book review), Τa Historica,  6, December 1986, p.p.. 487-493.

“Businessmen and University in Greece at the Beginning of the 20th century” International Conference: University: Ideology and Education, Athens 1989, v. Α’, p.p. 235-243.

“Employers and Workers at the Beginning of the 20th Century: from the Employers’ Side”, Τa Historica, 14-15, June December 1991, p.p. 99-112 .

«Les relations entre Patrons et Travailleurs vues du côté du patronat» in L’entreprise en Grèce et en Europe, XIème-XXème siècles, ed. Association Interdisciplinaire Franco- hellénique, Athens 1992, p.p. 159-168.

“Greek Capitalists at the Beginning of the 20th Century: Actors and Martyrs”, Τα Historica, 18-19, June December 1993, p.p. 79-112.

«Les capitalistes Grecs au début du XXe siècle: comédiens et martyrs», Histoire et Mesure, C.N.R.S, Χ, Paris, 1995, p.p. 65-88.

“About Innovation: the Historical Perspective” in Louloudis L., Beopoulos N., ed, Sociologic Approach of Development and Protection, Agricultural University of Athens, Athens 1999 p.p.115-125.

“The Gypsy Family”, Greek Society, 5, 2001 p.p. 29- 66

“The Greek Gypsies: a Mirror of the Past», in Agricultural Society and Folk Culture, International Conference, Athens 2006

“The Current Migration” Greek Society, 6, 2007, p.p. 51-70

“Education in Greece: Appearance and Structure”, Etudes Balkaniques XLVI no 1-2, 2010, Sofia p.p.  30-59

“Poor, Destitute and Distressed People during the Middle Ages in Europe”, Greek Society, 10-11, 2018 p.p. 369-452.  

“The Mendicants Orders and the Poor”, Greek Society, 10-11, 2018, p.p. 452-490



1- 3rd International Conference in Economic and Social History: Labour History: Production, Markets, Relations, Policies (from the Late Middle Ages to the Early 21st Century), University of Ioannina, 24-27 May 2017.

Title and Abstract: On the Margins of the Current Labor Market: Undocumented Migrants.

The paper focuses on the labour market where the undocumented migrants move in order to survive, namely the so-called “informal economy”, and on the corresponding labour relations that have been shaped. It sustains that under the pretext of undocumented migrants, this “traditional” labour field has been transformed.

The paper is based on informative material pertaining to 1351 cases of undocumented migrants and is the outcome of long term field research and collaboration with the Greek Council for Refugees. The main bulk of the material was supplemented with interviews. The research subjects are individuals from the East, Asia and Africa who arrived in Greece between 2000 and 2009, before the current economic crisis.

My research concerns the current situation of undocumented migrants, an extreme paradigm of the shattering of labor relations linked to the emergence of ruthless labor market/s. Yet, it is also intriguing to observe the model of survival strategies employed by the very poor in a historical context, the constant move for work of the weakest social strata.


2- The 8th Tensions of Europe Conference: Borders and Technology, University of Athens, 7-10 September 2017. 

Title and Abstract: The Social Reception of Innovation in Interwar Greece: the technology of electricity.

The paper explores the structures and conditions of social acclimatization for the technology of electricity in early twentieth century Greece and focuses on the professional field. Although electricity was the cutting edge technology of the time, the certified electrical engineers had tremendous difficulty in practicing their expertise in Greece: they faced the unfair competition of "practical electricians" (namely those who had learnt the craft on the job). The latter lacked the necessary knowledge, but they managed to intrude into the brand new technical and professional field, radically transforming the conditions of spreading the new technology.


3- Second Conference of the European Labour History Νetwork (ELHN), Nanterre and Sorbonne Universities, Paris, 2-4 November 2017

Title and Abstract: The Work Strategies of the Poor and the Diverse Ways of their Remuneration (Greece, 1900-1970)

My specific subject is the general organization of labour in Greece. Censuses and relevant statistics underline the reproduction of “singular” labour structures where -unlike the case of other European countries- salaried labour is not dominant. The other side of salaried labour, is  family- run units. They actually correspond to a distinct socio-economic system of production and of labour organization and to different ways of labour remuneration. These family run units managed to reproduce themselves thanks to the various forms of support constantly provided by political powers. Within this context, poor people were able to survive by moving in the interstices of these twofold labour structures.


4- Conference Out of Place: Vagrancy and Settlement, Institute of Historical Research-Senate House, University of London, 5-7 December 2017.

Title and Abstract: Current Aspects of Vagrancy: Undocumented Migrants in 21st Century Greece

The increasing numbers of vagrants are connected with extensive phenomena of socioeconomic and political disintegration. A question arises: notwithstanding the great historical differences, who are the vagrants of today?

Based on a long term field research and on informative material pertaining to 1351 cases of undocumented migrants who arrived in Greece between 2000 and 2009 from the East, Asia and Africa, this paper focuses on the differences and similarities between the lengthily studied “historical” vagrants and the current undocumented Migrants and on the contradictory attitudes on the part of the “settled” societies.


5- Twelfth European Social Science History Conference- International Institute of Social History, Queen's University Belfast, 4 - 7 April 2018.

Title and abstract: Work and “Underground” Economy in Greece: a Family Affair.

As part of a broader historical approach to the survival strategies of popular groups, this paper is mostly based on Censuses and interview material. It aims to approach the main work structures in 20th century Greece, focusing on the fact that these structures reveal important “deviations” when compared to prevailing theoretical approaches and a very close involvement with the so- called “informal economy”. The point here is to explore ways in which these specified work structures function and their internal logic.


6- Seminars of the Società Italiana di Storia del Lavoro on the theme Co-existence and interaction between free and unfree labour: The workers’ perspective), University of Turin, 20 - 22 September 2018 

Title and Abstract: Social Relations, Family, and Labour in 20th Century Greece

During the 1990s, Italian sociologists forged the notion of “the Southern European model of capitalist development”. It pertains to agricultural countries, characterized by late and restrained industrialization which didn’t experience massive proletarianisation. Based on family labour and employing a very limited number of salaried workers, small family units managed to dominate and reproduce themselves, thanks to the protection provided by the political power. The paper focuses on Greece, an extreme example of this model, and uses two types of sources: National Censuses and interviews.

A distinct labour paradigm emerges, which genuinely corresponds to a different organization of production, and labour, different work duration, different notion of work, and of work remuneration. This model is in fact a modern version of the (very old and forgotten) petty commodity production system.

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