In my current research I examine the points in which technology intersects with people’s experience and understanding of nature, on local and global scales. I am Professor of Environmental History at University of Stavanger, Norway, where I am also co-director (with Dolly Jørgensen) of the environmental humanities initiative The Greenhouse.
My background is as a historian trained in Science and Technology Studies (PhD, Trondheim, 2007). I used to be associate professor of history of technology and environment at Umeå University from 2010-2017.
In my research I have looked at the history of the scientific kitchen (MA thesis, Trondheim, 2001) and the infrastructure of beverage container recycling in Scandinavia and the United States (PhD dissertation and book, 2007 and 2011), the history of the Norwegian leisure cabin (postdoc project). I am currently leading a large Horizon 2020-funded project on Citizen Science and Environmental Citizenship and a Research Council of Norway-funded project on locative technologies, media, and the human sense of place. See my complete list of publications here.
In my teaching I highlight active student learning, community building, and discussions. I generally lecture very little, but prefer to facilitate student presentations and discussions as a way or learning, something which most students come to appreciate during the course of the semester. I integrate digital tools and resources in all my classes, including Zotero and WordPress. I have taught widely outside my own home discipline, for students in engineering, gender studies, computer science, design, and architecture. See here for an overview of my current and upcoming courses.
I am happy to serve as advisor for MA and PhD students working on topics that relate to my interests, in particular historical perspectives on technology, nature, design, architecture, consumption, computer games, waste, transportation, digital history, and animals. I currently serve as PhD advisor for Peter Bennesved (Umeå University), and have advised MA and PhD students in Umeå, at NTNU in Trondheim, and at University of Oslo.
I am deeply engaged in international organizations and journals in my field. In 2009 I founded the Nordic Environmental History Network with support from Nordforsk. I have served on the Executive Council of Society for the History of Technology (2011-2013) and on the Board of the European Society for Environmental History (2009-2013). I was Digital Content Editor for Environmental History 2013-1018 and I am a Contributing Editor of Technology and Culture. Together with Sarah Elkind (San Diego State University) I am a founding editor of the new book series Intersections: Histories of environment, science, and technology in the Anthropocene with University of Pittsburgh Press. I currently lead the Asia-Norway Environmental Storytelling Network (ANEST), funded by the Research Council of Norway.