Juan Camilo Franco

Pronouns: he/him/his

Email: jcfranco@wisc.edu

Advisor: Elizabeth Hennessy

Juan Camilo Franco headshot


I am a PhD Candidate in Latin American and Caribbean History at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. I was born and raised in Bogotá, Colombia, where I also did my bachelor’s degree in History and Philosophy at the Universidad de los Andes. After working a year evaluating mechanisms to improve citizen participation in the implementation of Colombia’s peace agreements I moved to Madison, Wisconsin, to pursue my doctoral studies.

My dissertation examines Colombia’s experiments of agricultural modernization during the second half of the twentieth century, focusing on the environmental transformations produced by technology, capital and labor. I am especially interested in agrarian infrastructures such as irrigation districts, that were central to the integral rural development strategy pursued by Colombia, the role of agricultural capital in environmental transformations, and the agricultural migrations between Colombia and Venezuela in the twentieth century.


PhD Candidate, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 2023
M.A in History, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 2021
B.A in History, Universidad de los Andes, Bogotá, 2019
B.A in Philosophy, Universidad de los Andes, Bogotá, 2018


  • Latin America and Caribbean History

Working Dissertation Title

Tumbando Monte: An environmental and technological history of Agrarian Reform in Colombia (1951-1998)

Selected Awards

  • IRIS Fieldwork Award, University of Wisconsin-Madison, 2023
  • Tinker-Nave Short Term Field Research Grant, University of Wisconsin-Madison,2022-2023
  • Center for Culture, History and the Environment Research Grant, University of Wisconsin- Madison, 2020

Courses Taught as TA

  • History 125: Green Screen: Environmental Perspectives on Film
  • History 260: Latin America: An Introduction
  • History of Science 202: The Making of Modern Science