Mikhail Belan

Mikhail stayed at the Trust’s Highgate house in August 2019

I am a doctoral student investigating the changing nature of the Russian city on the eve of the Industrial Revolution. In my research, I am exploring the economic relations, and social and political life, of Russian urban communities in the eighteenth century, compared with their counterparts from Central and Western Europe. The help of the Robert Anderson Trust enabled me to spend the month of August working in the main London archives, which hold the most important records of the City of London corporations, companies, first joint stock and overseas ventures.

I was also able to spend time working with the amazing collections stored in their many libraries, including those belonging to key London universities. Many of them have materials, never explored before, still waiting for their researchers! Moreover, I managed to meet with many major researchers in my field, who are based in London universities, and to attend several conferences and study groups and seminar meetings. It was a fantastic opportunity: to consult with the leading experts in many areas, share with them some of the fruits of my research, and receive their feedback and advice.

As a result of the support of the Robert Anderson Trust the month turned into the most productive period for my research so far. I would therefore like to take the opportunity to express my thanks to all the Trustees, the Director of the Trust, Dr Chris Naunton, and its Coordinator, Mr Howard Davies.