Accessibility statement

David Moon

Emeritus professor 


  • BA (Hons), History, 1st class, University of Newcastle upon Tyne, 1982
  • British Council/MinVUZ exchange scholar, Leningrad State University, USSR, 1985-6
  • PhD, Russian and East European Studies, University of Birmingham, 1987

Since 1988, I have held academic posts at the universities of Texas at Austin, USA, Newcastle, Strathclyde in Glasgow, Durham, and York (Anniversary Professor) in the UK, and visiting positions at, among others, the Southern Federal University, Rostov-on-Don (2003), the Kennan Institute, Washington, DC (2007), the Institute for Advanced Study, Princeton (2008-9), the Rachel Carson Center at LMU, Munich (2017), Nazarbayev University, Nur-Sultan (Astana), Kazakhstan (2018-20) and the Slavic-Eurasian Research Center, Hokkaido University, Japan (2022-23).

I currently hold an honorary professorship at the School of Slavonic and East European Studies, University College, London. I am the editor of the journal Environment and History

Research Interests

I am a specialist on Russian, Eurasian, and transnational environmental history.

My latest books are:

The American Steppes: The Unexpected Russian Roots of Great Plains Agriculture, 1870s-1930s (CUP, 2020), explores transfers of people, plants (crops and weeds), sciences and techniques from the Eurasian steppes to the Great Plains of the USA. It follows on from my previous monograph, The Plough that Broke the Steppes: Agriculture and Environment on Russia’s Grasslands, 1700-1914 (OUP, 2013), which analyses how Russians and other settlers came to understand the steppe environment and their relationship with it. It was awarded the Alexander Nove Prize.

Ed. with Catherine Evtuhov and Julia Lajus, Thinking Russia’s History Environmentally (Berghahn, 2023) ed. with Nicholas Breyfogle and Alexandra Bekasova, Place and Nature: Essays in Russian Environmental History (White Horse Press, 2021), which is a volume of essays arising from a Leverhulme International Network. It builds on the concept of a similar volume I co-edited with Peter Coates and Paul Warde, Local Places, Global Processes: Histories of Environmental Change in Britain and Beyond (Windgather Press, 2016).

Before I moved into environmental history, I worked on the history of peasants and serfdom, and am the author of Russian Peasants and Tsarist Legislation on the Eve of Reform, 1825-1855 (Macmillan, 1992), The Russian Peasantry, 1600-1930: The World the Peasants Made (Longman, 1999), and The Abolition of Serfdom in Russia, 1762-1907 (Longman, 2001).

I have published articles in journals in the humanities, social sciences, and natural sciences. My research has been supported by the Leverhulme Trust, the AHRC, the British Academy, and other funders.

Contact details

Professor David Moon