Laureate Team

Alison Bashford

Alison Bashford is Laureate Professor of History at the University of New South Wales, Sydney and Director of the Laureate Centre for History & Population. Prof. Bashford’s research connects the history of science, global history, and environmental history into new assessments of the modern world, from the eighteenth to the twentieth centuries. Her books, most recently The New Worlds of Thomas Robert Malthus (with Joyce E. Chaplin, Princeton University Press, 2016) and Global Population: History, Geopolitics and Life on Earth (Columbia University Press, 2014), offer large-scale and integrated analyses of how the twenty-first-century world came to be.

Emma Thomas

Emma Thomas, Laureate Postdoctoral Fellow, is a historian of gender, labour, and colonialism who focuses on transnational histories of Oceania and Europe. Her doctoral dissertation and first book project analyses intersections of gender and sexuality, labour regimes, violence, and demographic concerns in Papua New Guinea under German colonial rule. She earned her Ph.D. from the University of Michigan in 2019, where she was also a graduate student fellow at the Eisenberg Institute for Historical Studies and at the Institute for the Humanities. Emma’s next research project explores Pacific conceptions of reproductive health and healing and their dynamic relationships to colonialism, economic and environmental change, human and women’s rights discourses, and processes of medicalisation in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.

Naomi Parkinson

Naomi Parkinson, Laureate Centre Manager, is a scholar of imperial and colonial history. Her work examines slavery and its aftermath in the British Empire, with a particular focus on its legacies in shaping legal and governmental reform. Following her Ph.D. (Cambridge, 2018), she is at work on a book that examines contests for enfranchisement in Britain’s colonies in the decades following slavery’s abolition, c. 1833–1866. Most recently, Naomi was a Postdoctoral Research Fellow at UNSW, working on the project ‘Inquiring into Empire’ (2019-2021). With colleagues, she is co-authoring a book on Royal Commissions of Inquiry (1819-1835), detailing their role in the transformation of law, governance, and unfree labour across the British colonial world.

Stephen Pascoe

Stephen Pascoe, Laureate Postdoctoral Fellow, is a historian of cities, infrastructure, and imperialism who works primarily on the modern Middle East and the global French Empire. Prior to coming to UNSW, Stephen was a Mellon Humanities Faculty Fellow in the School of Humanities at the University of California, Irvine. His doctoral research (UCI, 2019) examined the paths by which foreign-capitalized infrastructure companies in French Mandate Syria became the targets of popular discontent, critique, and boycott. He co-edited Making Modernity from the Mashriq to the Maghreb (2015), a collection of essays on the contested meanings of modernity in the Middle East, and has published in Radical History Review, Arena, Al Jazeera, Jadaliyya, and The Conversation.

Aprajita Sarcar

Aprajita Sarcar will join the Laureate Centre as a postdoctoral fellow in July 2022. Her work examines the everyday governance of population in India, one of the first Asian countries to embark on a national population control program in 1951. Her work focuses on the creation and circulation of the campaign ‘Hum Do Hamare Do’ (we two, our two), analysing its role in promoting the nuclear family as a norm. She is currently a postdoctoral researcher in the Centre de Sciences Humaines, New Delhi and holds a PhD from Department of History, Queen’s University, Canada.

Laureate Visiting Fellows

Duncan Kelly (2021)

Duncan Kelly is the 2021 Senior Laureate Visiting Fellow at the Centre for History & Population at UNSW. Kelly is Professor of Political Thought and Intellectual History at the University of Cambridge and Fellow of Jesus College. His research explores intellectual history and political theory, particularly of the second half of the 19th century and the early 20th century. His books include Politics and the Anthropocene (Polity, 2019) and The Propriety of Liberty: Persons, Passions and Judgement in Modern Political Thought (Princeton University Press, 2011).

Laureate Senior Research Associates

Pratik Chakrabarti

Pratik Chakrabarti is Chair in History of Science and Medicine at the Centre for the History of Science, Technology and Medicine, University of Manchester. He has contributed widely to the history of science, medicine, and global and imperial history, spanning South Asian, Caribbean and Atlantic history from the eighteenth to the twentieth century. Prof. Chakrabarti’s books include Inscriptions of Nature: Geology and the Naturalization of Antiquity (Johns Hopkins, 2020), Medicine and Empire, 1600-1960 (Palgrave, 2014), and Bacteriology in British India: Laboratory Medicine and the Tropics (University of Rochester Press, 2012).

Aya Homei

Aya Homei is Lecturer in Japanese Studies at the University of Manchester. She specialises in the history of East Asian science, technology, and medicine, with particular interests in the history of midwifery, discourses on Japanese population, Japanese family planning in Southeast Asia, and the science of old age. Dr Homei has published articles in Social History of Medicine, East Asian Science, Technology and Medicine, and Medical Mycology and authored the book, Fungal Disease in Britain and the United States, 1850-200: Mycoses and Modernity (with Michael Worboys, Palgrave, 2013).

David Nally

David Nally is a Senior Lecturer in Geography at the University of Cambridge University and Fellow of Jesus College. His research has addressed colonial authority and subsistence crises, global land grabbing, technology and agrarian systems, and the relationships between population control and food production. Dr Nally’s books include Human Encumbrances: Political Violence and the Great Irish Famine (Notre Dame Press, 2011) and Key Concepts in Historical Geography (with John Morrissey, Ulf Strohmayer, and Yvonne Whelan, Sage, 2014).

Kavita Sivaramakrishnan

Kavita Sivaramakrishnan is Associate Professor, Sociomedical Sciences at the Mailman School of Public Health and Director of Program in Global Health and Ageing at Columbia University. Her interests and expertise are in the contemporary history of medicine and science in South Asia, the politics of infectious disease and epidemics, and the history of population anxieties in global health. Her books include As the World Ages: The Making of a Global Demographic Crisis (Harvard University Press, 2018) and Old Potions, New Bottles: Recasting Indigenous Medicine in Colonial Punjab (Orient Longman, 2006).  

Louise Edwards

Louise Edwards is Emeritus Professor of Chinese History at UNSW. She publishes on women and gender in China and Asia. Prof. Edwards is a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Humanities, The Academy of the Social Sciences in Australia and the Hong Kong Academy of the Humanities. Her most recent books include Drawing Democratic Dreams in Republican China (Washington University Press, 2020), Women Politics and Democracy: Women’s Suffrage in China (Stanford University Press, 2008), and Women Warriors and Wartime Spies of China (Cambridge, 2016).

Duncan Kelly

Duncan Kelly is the 2021 Senior Laureate Visiting Fellow at the Centre for History & Population at UNSW. Kelly is Professor of Political Thought and Intellectual History at the University of Cambridge and Fellow of Jesus College. His research explores intellectual history and political theory, particularly of the second half of the 19th century and the early 20th century. His books include Politics and the Anthropocene (Polity, 2019) and The Propriety of Liberty: Persons, Passions and Judgement in Modern Political Thought (Princeton University Press, 2011).

Jesse Olszynko-Gryn

Jesse Olszynko-Gryn is a Chancellor’s Fellow in History at the University of Strathclyde (Glasgow) and Affiliated Scholar with the Department of History and Philosophy of Science at the University of Cambridge. His first book, A Woman’s Right to Know: Pregnancy Testing in Twentieth-Century Britain (under contract with MIT Press for publication in 2022) reconstructs the remarkable transformation of an esoteric laboratory technology into a commonplace of everyday life. He is currently co-lead on the internationally collaborative research project, Risky Hormones and is developing a new project on postcolonial Britain’s engagement with transnational efforts to curb global population growth.

Simon Szreter

Simon Szreter is Professor in History and Public Policy at the University of Cambridge and Fellow of St John’s College. His main fields of research are demographic, public health, economic and social history, the history of empirical social science and methods for registering and measuring populations, and the relationship between history and contemporary public policy issues. Prof. Szreter’s books include Fertility, Class and Gender in Britain 1860-1940 (Cambridge University Press, 1996) and Health and Wealth: Studies in History and Policy (Rochester University Press, 2005).

Shailaja Fennell

Shailaja Fennell is Director of Research at the Cambridge Central Asia Forum, Reader in Regional Transformation and Economic Security at the University of Cambridge, and Fellow of Jesus College. Her research interests include institutional reform and collective action, food production and rural development; gender norms and gender gaps in development interventions, and provision of public goods and the role of partnerships. Dr Fennell’s books include Rules, Rubrics and Riches: The Interrelations between Legal Reform and International Development (Routledge, 2010).  

Angela Leung

Angela Leung is Director of the Hong Kong Institute of Humanities and Social Sciences and Joseph Needham-Philip Mao Professor at the University of Hong Kong. She has published in Chinese, English and French on the history of Chinese philanthropy and social history of medicine. Prof. Leung’s books include Leprosy in China: A History (Columbia University Press, 2009) and In Face of Illness (in Chinese, Renmin University Press, 2012).

John Pullen

John Pullen is Adjunct Associate Professor at the University of New England Business School. His research interests include urban economics, the history of economic thought, and Thomas Robert Malthus. Prof. Pullen is the editor of Malthus’ correspondence and of numerous editions of the Principles of Political Economy.

Geoff Harcourt

Geoff Harcourt AO is Visiting Professorial Fellow, UNSW Business School, Emeritus Reader in the History of Economic Theory, Cambridge, Emeritus Fellow, Jesus College, and Professor Emeritus, Adelaide University. His research interests include history of economic theory, intellectual biography, and Post-Keynesian theory and policy. He has authored, co-authored, edited or co-edited 29 volumes, as well as over 350 articles, book chapters, and reviews. Prof. Harcourt is a Fellow of the Academy of Social Sciences in Australia and in the United Kingdom, an Officer of the Order of Australia, and a Distinguished Fellow of the Economic Society of Australia, The History of Economics Society USA, The European Society for the History of Economic Thought and The History of Economic Thought Society of Australia.

Robert Mayhew

Robert Mayhew is Fellow and Senior Tutor at Pembroke College, Cambridge and a Fellow of the British Academy. His research is at the interface of historical geography and intellectual history, a particular interest for the past decade being the ideas and legacies of Malthus. He is the author of Malthus: The Life and Legacies of an Untimely Prophet (Harvard, 2014) and the editor of New Perspectives on Malthus (Cambridge, 2016). His latest book, Debating Malthus (2022), is a documentary reader which traces the entanglements of population, resources and the environment in European intellectual history.

Samita Sen

Samita Sen is Vere Harmsworth Professor of Imperial and Naval History, Trinity College, University of Cambridge. She has published extensively on gender and labour. Her specialization is colonial South Asia but she has also done contemporary and interdisciplinary research on issues such as domestic violence and labour in the informal sector. She is a member of editorial boards of various academic journals, including Modern Asian Studies and South Asian History and Culture. Her first monograph, Women and Labour in Late Colonial India: The Bengal Jute Industry (Cambridge University Press, 1999) won the Trevor Reese Prize in Commonwealth History.

Affiliated Researchers

Adam Bobbette

Adam Bobbette is a geographer and Lecturer in the School of Geographical and Earth Sciences, University of Glasgow. His interests lay primarily in the relationship between geology and politics in Southeast Asia since the late nineteenth century. 

Jarrod Hore

Jarrod Hore is an environmental historian of settler colonialism and colonial geology. His book, Visions of Nature: How Landscape Photography Shaped Settler Colonialism, is forthcoming with University of California Press. Most recently, Jarrod was the Mitchell Memorial Fellow at the State Library of New South Wales (2020).

Emily Kern

Emily Kern is an assistant professor at the University of Chicago, where she researches and teaches the intellectual and cultural history of modern science. She is currently at work on a book about the history of paleoanthropology and the search for the cradle of humankind.

Joel Wing-Lun

Joel Wing-Lun is an historian of late imperial and modern China and, from 2022, Lecturer in History and Asian Studies at UNSW. His research uses fieldwork and documents from local villages to examine the social, economic and environmental impact of imperial expansion on communities in Southwest China, and what the transformation of the region meant for the China as a whole.

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