The Joel A. Tarr Envirotech Article Prize

In association with SHOT, Envirotech has established the Joel A. Tarr Envirotech Prize to recognize the best article, published in either a journal or edited volume, on the relationship between technology and the environment in history. The prize is named in honor of the eminent U.S. historian of urban environments and technologies Joel A. Tarr.

Awarded roughly every eighteen months (alternating between SHOT and ASEH conferences), the prize recognizes innovative publications that explore new ways of thinking about the interplay between technological systems and the natural environment. Younger scholars are especially encouraged to submit their publications. Articles may be submitted in any language; however, for articles not written in English, the applicant will need to provide a translation.

The call for submissions for the next Joel A. Tarr Article Prize will be announced in 2022 and awarded at the fall 2022 meeting of the Society for the History of Technology.

Previous winners

2021 – Bill Rankin, “The Accuracy Trap: The Values and Meaning of Algorithmic Mapping, from Mineral Extraction to Climate Change,” Environment and History (published online August 23, 2020). (read citation)

2019 – David Fedman, “The Ondol Problem and the Politics of Forest Conservation in Colonial Korea,” Journal of Korean Studies 23, no. 1 (March 2018). (read citation)

2017 – Camille Lyans Cole, “Precarious Empires: A Social and Environmental History of Steam Navigation on the Tigris,” Journal of Social History 50 (2016): 74-101. (read citation)

2015 – Etienne Benson, “Generating Infrastructural Invisibility: Insulation, Interconnection, and Avian Excrement in the Southern California Power Grid,” Environmental Humanities 6 (2015): 103-130.

2014 – Andrew Denning, “From Sublime Landscapes to ‘White Gold’: How Skiing Transformed the Alps after 1930,” Environmental History 19 (2014): 78-108. (read citation)

2013 – Ashley Carse, “Nature as Infrastructure: Making and Managing the Panama Canal Watershed,” Social Studies of Science 42 (2012): 539-563. (read citation)

2011 – Christopher F. Jones, “A Landscape of Energy Abundance: Anthracite Coal Canals and the Roots of American Fossil Fuel Dependence, 1820-1860,” Environmental History 15 (July 2010): 449-484. (read citation)

2009 – Robert Gardner, “Constructing a Technological Forest: Nature, Culture, and Tree-Planting in the Nebraska Sand Hills,” Environmental History 14 (April 2009): 275-297. (read citation)

2008 – Paul Sutter, “Nature’s Agents or Agents of Empire? Entomological Workers and Environmental Change during the Construction of the Panama Canal,” Isis 98 (2007): 724-754. (read citation)

2007 – Joe Anderson, “War on Weeds: Iowa Farmers and Growth Regulator Herbicides,” Technology & Culture 46.4 (October 2005): 719-744.

2005 – Sara Pritchard, “Reconstructing the Rhone: The Cultural Politics of Nature and Nation in Contemporary France, 1945-1997,” French Historical Studies 27.4 (Fall 2004): 765-799 and Roger Horowitz, “Making the Chicken of Tomorrow,” in Industrializing Organisms (Routledge, 2003).

2004 – Jessica B. Teisch, “Great Western Power, ‘White Coal,’ and Industrial Capitalism in the West,” Pacific Historical Review 70 (May 2001): 221-253.

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