Alex Royt

Student Profile Picture

Ph.D. Candidate

BEFH Graduate Fellow at the Wharton School


Alex Royt studies the economic history of the Soviet Union. While originally a scholar of international history and international political economy, his dissertation focuses on the history of political violence in the Soviet Union. This has brought his work in conversation with prominent themes in business, economic and financial history, themes such as debt enforcement, credit monitoring, and corporate control. Drawing on unpublished archival sources from Ukrainian and Russian archives, it explores the relationship between state violence and the widespread financial distress of Soviet business during the 1930s.

He is currently a graduate fellow for the Business, Economic, and Financial History Project at the Wharton School, organized by the Wharton Initiative for Financial Policy and Regulation (WIFPR).  

He previously served as co-President of Clio, the history department's graduate student organization, in 2019-2020.

Advisor: Marc Flandreau

Committee Members: Peter Holquist, Ben Nathans, Marc Flandreau


M.Sc., International and World History, London School of Economics, 2018
M.A., International and World History, Columbia University, 2018
B.A., History and German (with honors), Binghamton University, 2016

Research Interests

Soviet Union, Violence, Debt, Monetary and Financial History, Business History, Economic History, Modern European Political Thought, Microeconomics.

Selected Publications

"The Gamestop bubble is an age-old financial craze with a modern twist," Washington Post, January 29, 2021. (