Dr. Bruno is an environmental historian of Russia and the Soviet Union with an interest in many aspects of human interactions with the natural world. His main scholarly ambition is to demonstrate the pertinence of environmental perspectives to major questions in Russian history. This goal has led him to write about animals and avalanches, energy and economy, revolution and repression, waste and water, science and socialism, and other themes. In this scholarship, he highlights the role of nature as an actor in history and the place of the Russian environmental experience in comparative and global history. A focus on specific locations—the Russian Arctic and the Siberian taiga, for instance—also characterizes his approach to environmental history. Most recently, his research has turned toward questions of human engagements with outer space and the variable climate system on this planet.
Current Student Research Opportunities
Students interested in conducting environmental history research on any aspect of the past are welcome to contact Dr. Bruno about developing their own independent projects that may be eligible for support from NIU’s engaged learning funds. Additional opportunities may be available for students with knowledge of the Russian language.
Past Student Research Projects
One student conducted exploratory research into potential archival holdings related to Arctic climate history in in the Chicago area and another searched for English language newspaper articles related to the Tunguska explosion of 1908.