Fabian Zimmer is a historian. His research focuses on the cultural history of modernity in Europe, which he explores through the history of technology, environmental history, visual and architectural history, and the history of science and medicine. He studied history, German philology, and linguistics at the universities of Heidelberg and Lund. He graduated from Heidelberg University in 2016 with a master’s thesis on narratives of water power in early twentieth century Sweden, for which he was awarded the Georg Agricola Society’s Early Career Researchers Award in 2017. From 2012 to 2017, he was research assistant at the Institute for History and Ethics of Medicine at Heidelberg University in two projects: one on utility films in the Upper Rhine region and the other on the implementation of prenatal diagnosis in western Germany between 1949 and 2010. From May to June 2018 he was a guest researcher at the Division of History of Science, Technology and Environment at the Royal Institute of Technology (KTH) in Stockholm. His research is funded by the German Federal Environmental Foundation (DBU). In his PhD project based at the Rachel Carson Center, he continues his exploration of the cultural and visual history of water power in twentieth-century Europe.
Dissertation project: Hydroelectric Projections: The Culture of Water Power in 1950s European Industrial Films
- “‘Gefesselte Naturkräfte.’ Zur filmischen Inszenierung von Wasserkraft und Modernisierung.” In Das Vorprogramm. Lehrfilm, Gebrauchsfilm, Propagandafilm, unveröffentlichter Film in Kinos und Archiven am Oberrhein 1900–1970: Eine französisch-deutsche Vergleichsstudie, edited by Philipp Osten et al., 123–40. Heidelberg: Heidelberg University Library, 2015.
- “Nature, Nation, and the Dam: Narratives about the Harnessed Waterfall in Early Twentieth-Century Sweden.” International Journal for History, Culture, and Modernity 7 (2019): 171–208.
- with Birgit Nemec. “Wie aus Umweltforschung die genetische Pränataldiagnostik entstand. Über eine Methodenverschiebung in der Vorsorge um 1970.” NTM, Zeitschrift für Geschichte der Wissenschaften, Technik, und Medizin 26, no. 1 (2019): 1–40.