My research interests go into different directions. One is the past and present of environmentalism. I have published a book about the Green Germany, which is a synthesis on German environmental history as well as a reflection on where environmentalism is standing in the twenty-first century. I continue to write and speak about environmental issues in Germany and beyond.
I am currently writing an environmental history of global modernity. How do we write a world history of human interaction with the natural world when all parameters come into flux: definitions of problems, priorities, allegiances, actors? And how do we write an environmental history of the world that speaks to the wider community of global historians? Environmental history should not just speak to itself, and this book seeks to demonstrate how environmental issues can help us writing global history.
Looking towards the future, I am building a research group on the global world of monoculture that seeks to understand why production systems all over the world, from coniferous forests in central Europe to soybeans in Brazil are tilting towards a reliance on a single crop during the modern era. The working argument is that there may be something akin to a “mind of monoculture,” which we can observe in very different societies all over the world.