Here's an archive of my blog posts on big data, chemical regulation, regional histories of science, and more at AmericanScience.

Interested in reading a working paper? Email me!


Compound Words: Chemists, Information, and the Synthetic World
(Under contract with University of Chicago Press)

Articles under review and in preparation

“Substitution: Swapping Chemicals, Sustaining Infrastructures, Perpetuating Hazards.” In Technologies in Use, ed. Lissa Roberts and Amy Slaton (in preparation).

Scholarly articles and essays

(* = peer-reviewed)

* “Molecular Bureaucracy: Toxicological Information and Environmental Protection.” Environmental History 24:3 (July 2019): 534-560. (preprint)

* “‘A Way of Thinking Backwards’: Computing and Method in Synthetic Organic Chemistry.” Historical Studies in the Natural Sciences 48:3 (June 2018): 300-337 (revised version of essay awarded the 2015 Reingold Prize). (preprint)

* “Paper Chemistry: François Dagognet and the Chemical Graph.” Ambix 65:1 (Feb 2018): 76-98 (special issue in honor of Ursula Klein). (preprint)

* “'Just as the Structural Formula Does': Names, Diagrams, and the Structure of Organic Chemistry at the 1892 Geneva Nomenclature Congress.” Ambix 62:1 (Feb 2015): 1-28 (revised version of essay awarded the 2014 Partington Prize).

“François Dagognet et la chimie informatique.” In François Dagognet épistémologue, ed. Bernadette Bensaude-Vincent, Jean-François Braunstein, and Jean Gayon (Paris: Éditions Matériologiques, forthcoming 2018) (abridged and translated version of “Paper Chemistry”). (preprint)

Review: Grasping the Technical Image." Historical Studies in the Natural Sciences 47:1 (Feb 2017): 117-125. (preprint)

Changing Names and Naming Change: Transformations in the ‘International Machinery’ of Chemical Information.” Proceedings of the International Workshop on the History of Chemistry, March 2-4 2015, Tokyo (2016): 68-76.

Remaking the X-Ray as an Instrument of Authentication.” Proceedings of the Authentication in Art Congress 2014 (July 2015).

Think Piece: Simple Problems.” IEEE Annals of Computing 36:1 (Mar 2014): 85-88. (preprint)

Articles for broader audiences

How to Save Your Sperm: We don’t just need safer chemicals, we need safer chemistry.” The New York Times, 31 Jul 2017.

Book Review: ‘American Eclipse’ by David Baron.The Wall Street Journal, 21 Aug 2017.

“A Century of Nomenclature for Chemists and Machines.” Forthcoming in Chemistry International, 41:3 (July 2019). (preprint)

A Leak in the Chemical Archive,” in Virtual Roundtable on Compression. Public Books, 13 Oct 2017.

Environmental Data, Public Trust, and Guerrilla Archiving.” First 100 Days: Narratives of Normalization and Disruption, (Program on Science, Technology, and Society, Harvard Kennedy School), 8 Feb 2017.

The Canary in Donald Trump’s Literal Coal Mine.”, 14 Dec 2016.

Book Review: ‘Database of Dreams’ by Rebecca Lemov.” The Wall Street Journal, 14 Dec 2015.

Book Review: ‘Making Marie Curie’ by Eva Hemmungs Wírten.” The Wall Street Journal, 21 Mar 2015.

Systematic Flexibility and the History of the IUPAC Nomenclature of Organic Chemistry.” Chemistry International 37:2 (Mar 2015): 10-14.

Quest for Permanence.” Chemical Heritage 31:1 (Spring 2013): 20-26 (with Augustin Cerveaux).

Book Reviews

Review of The Matter of History: How Things Create the Past, Timothy J. LeCain.” Forthcoming in Environmental History 24:3 (July 2019).

Review of Runaway: Gregory Bateson, the Double Bind, and the Rise of Ecological Consciousness, Anthony Chaney.” Isis 110:1 (2019): 211-212.

Review of About Method: Experimenters, Snake Venom, and the History of Writing Scientifically, Jutta Schickore” Journal of the History of Biology 51:3 (2018): 601-603.

The Pedagogical Construction of Chemistry. Review of Inventing Chemistry: Herman Boerhaave and the Reform of the Chemical Arts, John C. Powers.” Endeavour 37:4 (Dec 2013): 193-194. (preprint)