About four blocks of space in central London
that serves as a prime example of British educational imperialism
Historically LSE has meant "Let's See Europe" to naive Americans who sometimes figure out what's going on by the time exams begin.
Most consider LSE a bastion of leftist ideology and social policy. Founded in 1895 in the Fabian tradition, the school's goal has always been unbiased pursuit of fact. The Fabian tradition that social reform is best effected through patient argument. The Labour party has always had a close relationship.
LSE's significance was first demonstrated in the London-Cambridge disputes, the most notable role was played by John Maynard Keynes (a professor at Cambridge). While Keynes's view won over the LSE's non-interventionism for the short run, classical ideology has proven itself over the longer term.
During and after WWII LSE graduates and staff were essential to constructing the welfare state and represented the UK at the Bretton Woods conference, and in postwar negotiations with the US.
In the '50s and '60s LSE was home to Nobel Prize winners and generally left of center. Today the school draws students from 130 countries and prides itself as being a "laboratory for social science".
As of 2000 there were 62,000 registered alumni, among them 28 past or present heads of state, 30 members of the House of Commons, and 34 members of the House of Lords.
Nobel Prize winning staff and alumni:
George Bernard Shaw (1925)
Most everything else you might want to know is at: http://www.lse.ac.uk/lsehistory/
Ralph Bunche (1950)
Bertrand Russell (1950)
Philip Noel-Baker (1959)
Sir John Hicks (1972)
Friedrich von Hayek (1974)
James Meade (1977)
Arthur Lewis (1979)
Merton Miller (1990)
Ronald Coase (1991)
Amartya Sen (1998)
Robert Mundell (1999)
George Akerlof (2001)