I am Professor of History at University of Stavanger, Norway.
I am currently working on extinction narratives and museums. I have two large externally funded projects on this topic, which you can read about on my Remembering Extinction site.
My previous project was on the history and emotional contexts of animal reintroduction, rewilding, and resurrection. My book on this topic, Recovering Lost Species in the Modern Age, has been published by MIT Press. I got interested in ecological restoration when I became project coordinator for an interdisciplinary project on ecological restoration in policy and practice.
My post-doctoral project was an examination of policies about converting offshore oil and gas platforms into artificial reefs. It is a comparative project looking at these policies from the mid-1970s to present for three areas: the Gulf of Mexico, California Bight, and North Sea. This project incorporates some concepts from Science & Technology Studies (STS) to find ways of understanding how and why the policies developed differently.
Both my master’s and PhD projects dealt with medieval environmental issues. My master’s (University of Houston, 2003) dealt with forestry and fishery management in England and Normandy, France, during the period 1066 to 1135. My PhD project (University of Virginia, 2008) was on urban sanitation in England and Scandinavia from 1350-1600.
I have a Bachelor’s degree in Civil Engineering with an Environmental Engineering specialty (Texas A&M University, 1994). I worked for two different engineering consulting firms in Texas from 1995 to 2009 (with the last few years doing only short contract consulting). My areas of emphasis were waste management operations, site contamination assessments, oil and petrochemical operations, and data management.
- I am co-director of The Greenhouse, an environmental humanities initiative at the University of Stavanger.
- I am co-editor of the journal Environmental Humanities from January 2020.
- I was the President of the European Society for Environmental History, 2013-2017.
- I am an editor of the book series The Environment in History: International Perspectives with Berghahn Books.
- I am a co-founder of the Environmental History Network for the Middle Ages (ENFORMA) which was established in 2009. I designed and maintain the website.
- I am currently the H-Environment book review editor for non-US environmental history books.
- I was Secretary for the International Consortium of Environmental History Organizations (ICEHO), 2011-2015.
- I am active in the Envirotech Special Interest Group of the Society for the History of Technology (SHOT). I have previously served as a co-convener and on the Article Prize Committee.
- I served on the Hal Rothman Fellowship committee (2008-2011) for the American Society for Environmental History (ASEH) and the Sites committee (2009-2011) for the Society for the History of Technology (SHOT).
- I am a member of the Nordic Environmental History Network established by Finn Arne Jørgensen and funded by Nordforsk (2009-2011). I co-coordinated the workshop meeting in Trondheim in November 2009 and co-edited the book resulting from the October 2010 meeting in Stockholm.