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Dr Richard Brown
Research Associate



BA Modern History (Oxon); MA Conflict, Security and Development Studies (King’s); PhD War Studies (King’s).

Dr Richard Brown is a Research Associate in the Department of History, working on the uses of DDT in the Second World War as part of the Chemical Empire project, which is funded by the Wellcome Trust.

Richard read Modern History at New College, University of Oxford and undertook his MA and PhD in the War Studies Department, King’s College London. His doctoral research focussed on the role of the Commonwealth in the early development of the British nuclear weapons programme. Between 2014 and 2017, in parallel with his doctoral work, Richard was a member of the Policy Institute at King’s, where he conducted research on contemporary nuclear weapons issues and helped develop open-source intelligence techniques in support of global nuclear non-proliferation norms.

Prior to joining the Department he served as a policy adviser in the Office for Security and Counter Terrorism in the Home Office.



Richard's primary research interests are in the fields of diplomatic and strategic history and their intersections with the dynamics of empire and scientific research.

His current focus is on the use of DDT and other synthetic pesticides in the Second World War (as part of the Chemical Empire project here at York), but previous work has focussed on the early stages of the British nuclear weapons programme and the diffusion of nuclear knowledge across the Commonwealth during the 1940s.

Richard also has an interest in contemporary nuclear proliferation topics, open source research methodologies, and the wider history of the British Empire in the twentieth century.

Contact details

Dr Richard Brown
Research Fellow
V/A/209 Vanbrugh College Department of History
University of York
YO10 5DD

Tel: +44 (0)1904 323603