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PD Dr. Mihai Olaru


Research Interests

Early Modern State Formation

  • theories of state formation
  • administrative techniques
  • Early Modern Central, Eastern and South-eastern Europe
  • Storing and deployment of information
  • Metrology and political power

Corruption in the Early Modern Period

  • theories of corruption
  • patron-client relations
  • formality and informality in historical perspective
  • means of legitimation.


  • history of historiography
  • the politics of historical writing
  • Modern Romanian historiography


Academic career

  • 2006-2013: Central European University, Budapest, Department of History, PhD in History with the thesis:  Writs and Measures. Symbolic Power and the Growth of the State Infrastructure in Wallachia, 1740-1800.
  • 2005-2006: MA in History at Central European University, Budapest.
  • 2004-2005: MA in History at Babeş-Bolyai University, Cluj-Napoca.
  • 2000-2004: BA in History at Babeş-Bolyai University, Cluj-Napoca.


Higher education:

  • March-June, 2017, 2018, 2019, 2020: teaching assistant at Babeş-Bolyai University, for the seminar Medieval and Early Modern Romanian History.
  • September-December, 2008: teaching assistant at the History Department, Central European University, for the academic course Historiography and Theory of Historiography (as part of my doctoral training).

Secondary education:

  • September 2019-June 2020: History teacher: Theoretical High school Nicolae Bălcescu, Cluj-Napoca.
  • September 2018-August 2019, Hiistory teacher: Theoretical High school “Eugen Pora”, at the National College of Pedagogy “Gheorghe Lazăr”, Cluj-Napoca, and the Secondary School, Gârbău, Cluj County.
  • September 2017-August 2018: History teacher  Secondary School “Constantin Brâncoveanu”, Baciu, and Secondary School, Gârbău (both in Cluj County). 
  • January-August 2014: Hhistory teacher at the Cambridge International School/Transylvania College, Cluj Napoca.
  • 2010-2012: History teacher Theoretical Highschool “Gelu Voievod”, Gilău, Cluj County.


Research projects

  • Current project: A Genealogy of Corruption. Administrative Malpractice and Political Modernization in Eighteenth Century Wallachia. (Marie Skłodowska-Curie Individual Fellowship).

Scholarship and Awards

  • October 2015-July 2016: Postdoctoral Fellowship: New Europe College (NEC), Bucharest.
  • October 2014-February 2015: Research Fellowship: Centre for Advanced Study (CAS), Sofia.
  • September 2014-August 2015: Postdoctoral Fellowship: Babeş-Bolyai University, Cluj-Napoca, the project number POSDRU/159/1.5/S/140863 with the title „Competitive European researchers in the fields of socio-economics and humanities. Multiregional research network (CCPE)”.
  • November 2012-March 2013: Write-up Grant offered by Central European University. 2006-2010: Doctoral Fellowship offered by Central European University, Budapest (thesis defended in 2013).


  • The Private/Public Divide in the Administration of Wallachia during the Second Half of the 18th Century, submitted for the volume of the conference STADT UND ZUKUNFT. Europa und sein Südosten im 18. Jahrhundert/TOWN AND FUTURE. Europe and its Southeast in the 18th century – May 28, 2021. Current status: under revision. Title of the volume: to be announced.
  • 2020, “Abuzul de putere în administraţia Ţării Româneşti: un caz de la sfârşitul secolului al XVII-lea.” [Abuse of Authority in the Wallachian Administration: a case from the End of the 17th Century], Istoria şi scrisul istoric azi. Opţiuni metodologice. Paradigmă. Agendă, eds. Susana Andea, Ela Cosma, Iosif Marin Balog, Atilla Varga, Cluj-Napoca, 2020.
  • 2019, „Condicile și administrarea justiției în Țara Românească în secolul al XVIII-lea” [Registers and Justice Administration in Eighteenth Century Wallachia]. Anuarul Institutului de Istorie „George Bariţiu”, Series Historica, 2019. 
  • 2019, „Accepţiunile termenului de registrum în Transilvania secolului al XIV-lea” [The Meaning of the Term registrum in Fourteenth Century Transylvania], in Anuarul Institutului de Istorie „George Bariţiu”, Series Historica, 2019.
  • 2018: “From Disloyalty to Law-breaking. The Emergence of Administrative and Judicial Malpractice in Eighteenth-Century Wallachia” in Südost-Forschungen, No. 77.
  • 2017: “The Wine-Tax Regulations and the Transformation of the State in Wallachia, 1740-183” (New Europe College Ştefan Odobleja Yearbook 2015-2016.
  • 2016: “Recordkeeping and State Making. The County Registers in Wallachia, 1775-1831”, (in CAS Working Papers Series, No. 8, Centre for Advanced Study, Sofia, available at http://www.cas.bg/en/publications.html.
  • 2015: “The Princely Fathom. Uniformization of Measures and State Making in Wallachia, 1775-1831” în Studia Universitatis Babeş-Bolyai. Historia, vol. 60, no. 1, June, pp. 200-220.
  • 2015: The “Juridist” Fallacy. Methodological Aspects of the Study of Weights and Measures in Wallachia”. Philobiblon. Transylvanian Journal of Multidisciplinary Research in Humanities, vol. XX, no. 2, July-December 2015, pp. 434-446.
  • 2014: “„Trecut în condică”. Stocarea informaţiei şi puterea statală în Ţara Românească în secolul al XVIII-lea” [“Transcribed in the Register”. The Storing of Information and State Power in Wallachia during the Eighteenth Century]. Revista istorică, t. XXV, no. 3-4, pp. 323-348.
  • 2013: “From Local Custom to Written Law. Agrarian Regulations and Infrastructural Growth in Wallachia, 1740-1800”. Studia Universitatis Babeş-Bolyai. Historia, vol. 58, no. 1, pp. 155-180.


Aktuelle Lehrveranstaltungen (Wintersemester 2021/2022)

Universität Regensburg

Fakultät für Sprach-, Literatur- und Kulturwissenschaft

Fakultät für Philosophie, Kunst-, Geschichts-, und Gesellschaftswissenschaften

  • Topics in Early Modern Romanian History (practice class/übung kurs).

  1. Fakultät für Philosophie, Kunst-, Geschichts- und Gesellschaftswissenschaften
  2. Institut für Geschichte

PD Dr. Mihai Olaru

PD Dr. Mihai Olaru

E-Mail: Vasile-Mihai.Olaru (at) geschichte.uni-regensburg.de