Staff Profile

Thomas B. Robertson

Tel: 508-831-5871
Department: Humanities & Arts
Thomas B. Robertson
Associate Professor
International & Global Studies
Environmental & Sustainability Studies
Science & Technology
Humanities and Arts
BA Williams College 1989
PhD University of Wisconsin-Madison 2005
(ON LEAVE 2016-2017 US Agency for International Development). I specialize in environmental history, international development, 20th-century America, and the Himalayas. I am particularly interested in American relations with the developing world. My first book, The Malthusian Moment, focuses on post-World War II American debates about population growth, both at home and globally. My current research examines the environmental history of U.S. development projects in Cold War Nepal, including malaria, land reform, population and family planning, and conservation projects. I have studied, researched, and worked in Nepal on and off since 1988. In addition I am the editor of two collections in the works--one on the environmental history of the US during World War II and the other an environmental history of international development. I am also an advisor to two NGOs in Nepal: the Jana Sewa Samaj/Nepal (People's Welfare Society/Nepal) and the Tharu Culture Museum.
Thomas B. Robertson
Salisbury Labs 234
Scholarly Work: 
“‘Front Line of the Cold War’: The U.S. and Point Four Development Programs in Cold War Nepal, 1950-1953" in Pratyoush Onta, ed., The Long 1950s, Vol 2: The World in Nepal. Routledge (forthcoming).
“Cold War Landscapes: Toward an Environmental History of U.S. Development Programs in the 1950s and 1960s". Cold War History (available online).
"Malthus Today" in Robert Mayhew, ed., New Perspectives on Malthus. Cambridge University Press, 2016 (with Derek Hoff).
The Malthusian Moment: Global Population Growth and the Birth of American Environmentalism. Rutgers University Press, 2012.
“‘Thinking Globally’: American Foreign Aid, Global Scarcity, and the Emergence of Environmentalism in the 1960s," in Mark Lawrence, ed., The United States and the Dawn of the Post-Cold War Era. Oxford University Press, 2014.
“The Bird’s Eye View: Toward an Environmental History of Aviation". Journal of Transport History, Dec., 2014.
“Total War and the Total Environment: Fairfield Osborn, William Vogt, and the Birth of Global Ecology". Environmental History, April, 2012.
Professional Highlights & Honors: 
AAAS Science and Technology Policy Fellow, US Agency for International Development
Truman Kauffman Fellow
NSF Scholar's Award Recipient
Fulbright Senior Scholar, Nepal
User Type: 
Unpublished Faculty