Cyrus C. M. Mody
Assistant Professor of History
Email: Cyrus.Mody  rice.edu Phone: X2553 Office: 309 Humanities
ON LEAVE Fall 2012 - NSF Scholars Award, "The Long Arm of Moore's Law"
- Ph.D. Cornell University, 2004
- A.B. Harvard University, 1997
Areas of Interest
Research and Teaching
Professor Mody teaches the history of science, technology, and engineering in the modern era (~1600 to the present). His own research focuses on the physical and engineering sciences in the very modern era (~1970 to the present), with particular emphasis on the creation of new communities and institutions of science in the late Cold War and the post-Cold War periods. His book, Instrumental Community: Probe Microscopy and the Path to Nanotechnology (to be published by MIT Press) explores the co-evolution of an experimental technology (the scanning tunneling microscope and atomic force microscope and their variants) and the community of researchers who built, bought, used, sold, theorized, or borrowed these instruments. Currently, he is working on a history of the communities and institutions of nanotechnology, in collaboration with colleagues at the Center for Nanotechnology in Society at the University of California, Santa Barbara, the Chemical Heritage Foundation in Philadelphia, and here at Rice.
Prof. Mody has served on dissertation committees for doctoral candidates in History and Anthropology, and has co-taught (with Carl Caldwell) the History department’s pedagogy seminar. He is available to advise graduate students interested in the history of science or technology (or science and technology studies more generally), and can offer graduate seminars in those fields. He is currently an informal advisor to postdocs and graduate students in Rice’s Center for Biological and Environmental Nanotechnology who are interested in discussing ethical and societal issues related to their work.
- “Molecular Electronics in the Longue Durée: The Microelectronics Origins of Nanotechnology” (with Hyungsub Choi). Social Studies of Science, forthcoming.
- “Scientific Training and the Creation of Scientific Knowledge.” In Handbook of Science and Technology Studies, edited by Edward J. Hackett, Olga Amsterdamska, Michael Lynch, and Judy Wajcman, 3rd edition. Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press, forthcoming.
- “Universities, Corporations, and Instrumental Communities: Commercializing Probe Microscopy, 1981-1996.” Technology and Culture 47, no. 1 (2006): 56-80.
- “Nanotechnology and the Modern University.” Practicing Anthropology (special issue on nanotechnology) 28, no. 2 (2006): 23-27.
- “The Sounds of Science: Listening to Laboratory Practice.” Science, Technology, and Human Values 30, no. 2 (2005): 175-198.
- “Small, But Determined: Technological Determinism in Nanoscience.” Hyle/Techne (special joint issue on nanotechnology) 10, no. 2 (2004): 99-128.
- “A Little Dirt Never Hurt Anyone: Knowledge-Making and Contamination in Materials Science.” Social Studies of Science 31, no. 1 (2001): 7-36
| "Universities, Corporations, and Instrumental
Communities: Commercializing Probe Microscopy,
1981-1996." Practicing Anthropology (2006)
| "The Sounds of Science: Listening to
Laboratory Practice." Science, Technology
, and Human Values (2005)
- Professor Mody’s current CV
Professor Mody's personal web site.