Ulbe Bosma obtained his PhD in history at Leiden University in 1995. From 1993 to 2007 he acted as coordinator of the Sephis programme. Since 1997 he is Senior Researcher at the IISH and since 2012 professor of ‘International Comparative Social History’ at the Free University of Amsterdam.

The endowed chair covers empirical research into labour and labour relations, from a comparative social historical and geographical perspective. At present he is also visiting professor at the École des Hautes Études en Sciences Sociales (EHESS) in Paris. His main fields of interest are the histories of labour and commodity production, especially sugar, and international labour migration.