Message from the Director

2017-2018 was my first year at Pitt and my first year as Director of the World History Center. I am honored to be a part of the WHC, which will celebrate its tenth anniversary next year.  I am proud to build on the vision and leadership of the Center’s Founding Director, Patrick Manning, and on the experience and guidance of Interim Director Diego Holstein, Associate Director Molly Warsh, Center Coordinator David Ruvolo, and many other experienced staff, faculty and students.

I envision the WHC as an integral center of activity for all Pitt students and faculty whose research and teaching concerns the global and transregional past, while the Center also participates in networks in Pittsburgh and around the world.  This year, we have launched a range of campus-facing global initiatives and we have collaborated in interdisciplinary activities across the University with partners like the University Center for International Studies (UCIS), the University Library System (ULS), the School of Computing and Information (SCI), and the Dietrich School.

It has been a busy year at the WHC.  We have inaugurated a new space and a new website, we have hosted five fellows and affiliates, and we have started four series of recurrent and drop-in events that have collectively reached dozens of graduate students and faculty.  We have hired three Public History GSAs and trained ten undergraduate interns.  We are holding a summer conference with teachers and university faculty with an interest in K-12 education and world history, and we have worked with the Department of History to launch a Graduate Credential in Teaching World History.  We are conducting and supporting a wide range of research and publication activities: a federally funded digital infrastructure design project, curriculum development in environmental studies, data and application hosting services, working groups, a journal and a book series, and eight faculty and graduate student research and travel awards.  We have hosted or are planning five events including a graduate student conference, and we have cosponsored an additional seven events.

In the perilous times in which we live, with globalism under attack, it is more vital than ever to study the long history of transregional connections and the ways that they have given rise to both creativity and disruption. The World History Center is an ideal place to do that work.


--Ruth Mostern, WHC Director, May 2018