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Christopher Jones

Assistant Director of Graduates Studies & Associate Professor, History
Faculty, TEMPE Campus, Mailcode 4302
Assoc Professor of History
Faculty, TEMPE Campus, Mailcode 4302
Assoc Professor of History
Faculty, TEMPE Campus, Mailcode 4302
Associate Professor
Faculty, TEMPE Campus, Mailcode 4302
Biography: 

Christopher Jones is an associate professor of history in the School of Historical, Philosophical, and Religious Studies. He received his bachelor's degree from Stanford University and his master's and doctorate from the University of Pennsylvania History and Sociology of Science Department. Before joining ASU, he held postdoctoral fellowships at the Harvard University Center for the Environment and the Ciriacy-Wantrup Fellowship at the University of California-Berkeley.

His first book, Routes of Power: Energy and Modern America (Harvard, 2014), analyzes the causes and consequences of America's first energy transitions. He is currently working on a book provisitionally titled The Invention of Infinite Growth (under contract with Chicago University Press) that explores how economists have come to calculate ever-increasing growth without accounting for the natural world. 

He is committed to public outreach and has published in The New Republic, Aeon, Huffington Post, The Atlantic, and Zocalo Public Square.

Education: 
  • PhD, History and Sociology of Science, University of Pennsylvania, 2009
  • MA, History and Sociology of Science, University of Pennsylvania, 2005
  • BA, Philosophy, Stanford University, 2000
Research Interests: 

Prof. Jones is interested in the past, present, and future of energy systems. His research focuses on how human societies have come to use energy the ways they do, and the consequences of these choices for the ways people live, work, and play. His first book, Routes of Power: Energy and Modern America (to be published in March 2014 with Harvard University Press) examines America's first energy transitions: the rising use of coal, oil, and electricity in the mid-Atlantic region from 1820 to 1930. The book demonstrates that large infrastructures for transporting energy were essential for stimulating and sustaining new energy practices.

His current project studies the relationships between economic ideas and the natural world. He is particularly interested in exploring how economists have come to calculate economic growth with little regard for the depletion of planetary resources such as non-renewable stocks of energy. Given the profound influence of economics on determining what types of policies are considered feasible and desirable, this project seeks to better understand the epistemological assumptions that structure contemporary discussions on energy, climate change, and sustainability.

Publications: 

Books

The Invention of Infinite Growth: How Economists Forgot About the Natural World (book manuscript under contract with University of Chicago Press).

Routes of Power: Energy and Modern America (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 2014).

  • Winner, 2015 Edelstein Prize from the Society for the History of Technology.

Articles

“Teaching the Environmental Humanities: International Perspectives and Practices” with Emily O’Gorman et al. Environmental Humanities 11 (2), 2019: 427-460.

“The Materiality of Energy” Canadian Journal of History / annals canadiennes d’histoire 53 (3), Winter, 2018: 378-394.

“Building History Enrollments Through Online Courses for the Professions: Lessons from Teaching the History of Engineering” The History Teacher 51 (4), August, 2018: 549-572.

“How Pipelines Constrict Oil Flows” Limn Issue 10: Chokepoints, January, 2018.

“Infrastructure and Democracy” with David Reinecke. Issues in Science and Technology 33 (2), Winter, 2017: 24-30. “Petromyopia: Oil and the Energy Humanities” Humanities 5 (2), June, 2016.

“Landscapes of Intensification: Transport and Energy in the U.S. Mid-Atlantic, 1820-1930” Journal of Transport History 35 (2), December, 2014: 236-41.

“History’s Contribution to Energy Research and Policy” with Richard F. Hirsh. Energy Research & Social Science 1 (1), March, 2014: 106-11.

“The British Shaping of America’s First Fossil Fuel Transition.” In “Energy (and) Colonialism, Energy (In)Dependence: Africa, Europe, Greenland, North America,” edited by Clapperton Chakanetsa Mavhunga and Helmuth Trischler, RCC Perspectives 2014, no. 5, 27–34.

“Building More Just Energy Infrastructure: Lessons From the Past.” Science as Culture 22 (2), June, 2013: 157-63.

Christopher F. Jones Clark A. Miller Alastair Iles. The Social Dimensions of Energy Transitions. Science as Culture (2013).

Christopher F. Jones Shi-Loh Lin Kyoko Sato. Narrating Fukushima: Scales of a Nuclear Meltdown. East Asian Science, Technology, and Society (2013).

 “Learning from Fukushima” with Sebastian Pfotenhauer, Kris Saha, and Sheila Jasanoff. Issues in Science and Technology 28 (3), Spring, 2012: 79-84. 

“The Carbon-Consuming Home: Residential Markets and Energy Transitions.” Enterprise & Society 12 (4), December, 2011: 790-823. 

Honorable Mention, 2012 Oxford Journals Article Prize for the best article published in the journal Enterprise & Society in the previous year.

“A Landscape of Energy Abundance: Anthracite Coal Canals and the Roots of American Fossil Fuel Dependence, 1820-1860.” Environmental History 15 (3), July, 2010: 449-84.

Winner, 2011 Joel A. Tarr Envirotech Prize for the best article published in the previous eighteen months in the relationships between technology and environment in history.  

 

Spring 2020
Course NumberCourse Title
JUS 494Special Topics
HST 494Special Topics
HUL 494Special Topics
SOS 498Pro-Seminar
SOS 594Conference and Workshop
HUL 598Special Topics
HST 599Thesis
HST 792Research
HST 799Dissertation
Fall 2019
Course NumberCourse Title
HST 597Capstone
HST 599Thesis
HST 682Advcd Rsrch Skill
HST 792Research
HST 799Dissertation
Summer 2019
Course NumberCourse Title
HST 790Reading and Conference
Spring 2019
Course NumberCourse Title
HST 318History of Engineering
HST 580Practicum
HST 592Research
HST 599Thesis
HST 682Advcd Rsrch Skill
HST 792Research
HST 799Dissertation
Fall 2018
Course NumberCourse Title
HST 599Thesis
HST 792Research
HST 799Dissertation
Spring 2018
Course NumberCourse Title
HST 599Thesis
HST 790Reading and Conference
HST 792Research
HST 799Dissertation
Fall 2017
Course NumberCourse Title
HST 599Thesis
HST 792Research
HST 799Dissertation
Spring 2017
Course NumberCourse Title
HST 306Studies in US History
REL 700Research Methods
HST 700Research Methods
PHI 700Research Methods
HST 792Research
HST 799Dissertation
Fall 2016
Course NumberCourse Title
HST 792Research
Spring 2016
Course NumberCourse Title
HST 302Studies in History
HST 306Studies in US History
Fall 2015
Course NumberCourse Title
HST 318History of Engineering
HST 598Special Topics
Honors / Awards: 

American Council for Learned Societies Fellowship (2018)

Arizona State Institute for Humanities Research Fellows Program (2017)

Edelstein Prize for Routes of Power; awarded to outstanding book published in last three years by the Society for the History of Technology (2015)

Joel A. Tarr Envirotech Article Prize for "A Landscape of Energy Abundance" (2011)

Editorships: 

Editor, H-Environment Roundtable Reviews

Service: 

Editor, H-Environment Roundtable Reviews (2014 - 2018)

Director of Graduate Studies, History (Fall 2016-Fall 2017)

Article reviews for Technology & CultureEnvironmental HistoryEnterprise & SocietyJournal of the Early American RepublicJournal of Policy HistoryScience & Technology StudiesEnergy Research & Social Science. 

Grant reviews for National Science Foundation and Philadelphia Area Consortium for the History of Science