University of Wisconsin–Madison

Lisa Ruth Rand

Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow / History 221

Office: University Club 308
Office Hours: Wednesdays 1:00-3:00

Lisa Ruth Rand


I am an A. W. Mellon Postdoctoral Fellow at the Institute for Research in the Humanities, with joint teaching appointments at the History Department and the Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies. I study the histories of science, technology, and the environment during the Cold War. My current book project examines the rise of a system of waste in orbit around the planet. I explore how different communities on the ground came to see the nearest regions of outer space as a natural global environment at risk, and negotiated new forms of international governance to protect it from anthropogenic degradation. I teach courses in global environmental history and the history of technology.


Ph.D., History and Sociology of Science, University of Pennsylvania
M.A., History and Sociology of Science, University of Pennsylvania
B.A., English and Astronomy, Barnard College

Selected Publications

  • “Beyond the Biosphere: Expanding the Limits of the Human World.” In Living in the Anthropocene: Humanity in the Age of Humans, W. John Kress and Jeffrey K. Stine, eds. Washington, DC: Smithsonian Institution, forthcoming Fall 2017.
  • With Dave Baiocchi. Good Seeing: Best Practices for Sustainable Operations at the Air Force Maui Optical and Supercomputing Site. (Santa Monica, CA: RAND Corporation, 2016).
  • “The Case for Female Astronauts: Reproducing Americans in the Final Frontier.” The Appendix 2 no. 3 (July 2014).

History Courses

  • History 229 – Global Environmental History