Moritz von Brescius is currently an SNSF Ambizione Fellow at the University of Bern and is also affiliated with the Weatherhead Research Cluster on Global Transformations at Harvard University. Previously, he was a John F. Kennedy Memorial Fellow at the Center for European Studies, Harvard University. He has studied in Berlin, Oxford, Florence and Cambridge (UK). His doctoral thesis won several awards. It was published as German Science in the Age of Empire: Enterprise, Opportunity and the Schlagintweit Brothers (Cambridge University Press, 2019, paperback 2020). He has recently published articles in Modern Asian Studies and Comparativ, among other journals, and is a contributor to The Oxford World History of Empire (Oxford University Press, 2020). His research interests include the global history of science and empire, the environmental and economic history of plantation economies, and the acclimatization of cash crops as part of the global expansion of commodity frontiers. His current book project explores colonial capitalism in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries in Assam, the relationship between commodity frontiers and imperial governance, and how structures of investment and property formation intersect with colonial ambitions of conservation. His next project is a bold new account of the Great Acceleration through the lens of the twentieth-century industrial “battle of materials”.

Portrait of Moritz von Brescius