I studied at the Universities of Kiel (Germany), Arizona and New Mexico (both in the United States), and Liverpool. Before coming to Swansea, I taught at Liverpool and Leeds Universities.
I am currently working on two projects relating to the last decade of the Cold War.
(1) The first area of my current research concerns professional activism in the Cold War, and combines my long-standing interests in the histories of the Cold War, nuclear culture, transnationalism, and science and technology with a new investigation into the social history of medicine. This project explores medical activism against nuclear weapons in Britain, West Germany and the United States, during the 1980s, through the lens of the key transnational organization of the medical anti-nuclear-weapons movement – the International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War (IPPNW) – and its affiliates in Britain, the United States and West Germany. This new study of transnational networks of medical activists will provide urgently-needed critical insight into professional activism and its cultural and social impacts in different national contexts. I am currently completing a first pilot study on the British part of the project that received generous support from the Wellcome Trust.
(2) My second area of research addresses uncertainty about the anticipated effects of nuclear war in Britain during the period of the so-called Second Cold War from 1979 to 1985. At present, I am working on a micro history that examines the epistemological uses of this uncertainty by a range of different actors, including the government, political and extra-parliamentary groups, as well as experts from a range of different disciplines and popular media.
In addition, I continue with my research in the area of film, television and history and have recently started to develop a new interest in the role of canals in global and maritime history.