University of Pittsburgh Feature Research


Each year starting 2010, the Dataverse project will concentrate on collecting and displaying data on a major commodity. We begin with opium, a commodity of great social and economic importance in past and present, for which a global collection of data will greatly increase our knowledge. We seek data on production, trade, and consumption of opium in any part of the worldat any time, and will display individual datasets and a comprehensive summary.

For the year 2011, the project has selected silver as the feature research project. Again, we will collect and display data on the production, trade, and use of silver in all regions at any time. We hope that the results will show expansion and change in the world’s money systems, especially from the sixteenth century forward.

In general, the Feature Research Projects of the World-Historical Dataverse are to provide valuable short-term results of our research while we carry out the time-consuming labors of constructing a universal historical dataset. We will be pleased to have suggestions from Dataverse users on choices for featured commodities in the years after 2011.