Scott Montgomery

Scott Montgomery



Scott L. Montgomery is an author, geoscientist, and affiliate faculty member in the Jackson School of International Studies, University of Washington. He writes and lectures on a wide variety of topics related to energy (geopolitics, technology, resources, climate change), American politics, intellectual history, language and communication, and the history of science. He is a frequent contributor to online journals such as The Conversation, Forbes, and Fortune, and his articles and op-eds are regularly featured in many outlets, including Newsweek, Marketwatch, The Huffington Post, and UPI. He also gives public talks and serves on panels related to issues in global energy and their relation to political and economic trends and ideas of sustainability. For more than two decades, Montgomery worked as a geoscientist in the energy industry, writing over 100 scientific papers and 70 monographs on topics related to oil and gas, energy technology, and industry trends.

Montgomery is the author of 12 books, including, The Shape of the New: Four Big Ideas and How They Built the Modern World (Princeton, 2015), co-authored with Dan Chirot, which The New York Times selected as one of the 100 Most Notable Books of 2015. Shape of the New has been widely praised for its themes regarding the power of ideas in the shaping of modern history, using such thinkers as Adam Smith, Charles Darwin, Karl Marx, and the founders of American democracy, particularly Thomas Jefferson and Alexander Hamilton, as examples of how influential Enlightenment thought has been. The book also examines how such thought has been opposed by forms of often-violent reaction and extremism, such as fascism, totalitarianism, and religious fundamentalism.

Other recent works include: Seeing the Light: Making the Case for Nuclear Power in the 21st Century, co-author Thomas Graham Jr. (Cambridge; forthcoming fall 2017); The Chicago Guide to Communicating Science (Second Edition, Chicago, 2017); A History of Science in World Cultures (Routledge, 2015); Does Science Need a Global Language? (Chicago, 2013); Powers that Be: Global Energy for the 21st Century and Beyond (Chicago, 2010).

Montgomery is currently pursuing several areas of research. These include the role of Enlightenment ideas in present-day American politics, as well as the future of petroleum and its role in geopolitics and climate change. New book projects focus on the global impact of Darwin and Darwinism since 1860, and the medieval origins of modern science.


Energy Columnist, Global Policy

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