Emily Klancher Merchant

Assistant Professor of Science and Technology Studies, University of California, Davis

I am a historian of science and technology in the twentieth century, focusing on the human sciences and technologies of human measurement. My current project, Prediction and Control: U.S. Demography and Global Population in the Twentieth Century, examines how human population became a subject of scientific expertise and how demography shaped population dynamics during a period of unprecedented growth. This project combines archival research, oral history, and computational textual analysis to develop an intellectual, institutional, and material history of the science and politics of global population in the twentieth century. Past projects include studies of the historical demography and environmental history of the United States West, which use computational methods to explore Mexican migration to the United States, the environmental consequences of agriculture on the Great Plains, and the changing living arrangements of older women. These projects have resulted in publications in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, International Migration Review, and Population Research and Policy Review, as well as the production of public-use datasets for historical demography and environmental history.

Experience

  • –present
    Assistant Professor of Science and Technology Studies, University of California, Davis