Articles & articles in books
K.J.W. Oosthoek, “Watervervuiling in de Groninger Veenkoloniën, 1850 – 1980”, Tijdschrift voor Ecologische Geschiedenis, 2 (1997) vol. 2, 36-42.
“Water pollution in the Groninger Ven Colonies, 1850-1980”. Published in the Belgium/Dutch Journal for Environmental History.
Abstract: Twenty Years ago the Ven Colonies in Groningen regularly came into the news. The problems around wastewater were controversial matter. Indeed, already in the 19th century people were aware of the water pollution in the Peat Colonies. But then the attitudes in the period between 1850 and 1980 have contributed to the speed with which the problems were solved. Eventually social, economic and technical developments combined, leading to the solution of the problem.
K.J.W. Oosthoek, “The Logic of British Forest Policy, 1919-1970”, In: Klaus Kubeczko (ed.), Transitions Towards a Sustainable Europe. Ecology – Economy – Policy. Proceedings of the 3rd Biennial Conference of the European Society for Ecogical Economics (Vienna, 2000). Download paper (PDF).
K.J.W. Oosthoek & M. Roepers, “Beeldvorming van de vos door de eeuwen heen”, in: Thoen, Erik et al (eds.), Jaarboek voor Ecologische Geschiedenis 1999, Vol. 2 (Academia Press, Gent, 2001), pp. 61-78.
Summary: The fox’s Reputation Through the Ages. Published in the Dutch Yearbook for Environmental History 1999. This article explores the sources of the bad reputation of the fox by looking at classical texts and literature from antiquity to the present. It also seeks to to explain how these old perceptions are still fuelling the emotions surrounding discussions about fox hunting. Download abstract (PDF).
Jan Oosthoek, “The stench of prosperity. Water Pollution in the Northern Netherlands, 1850-1980”, in: Geneviève Massard-Guilbaud & Christophe Bernhardt (eds.), The Modern Demon. Pollution in Urban and Industrial European Societies (Clermont-Ferrand, 2002), pp. 179-194. Download full book chapter.
Jan Oosthoek, “Issues in European Woodland History”, in: John Dargavel & Brenda Libbis (eds.), Australia’s Ever-changing Forests V: Proceedings of the Fifth National Conference on Australian Forest History (Canberra, 2002), pp. 28-38.
Download full chapter (PDF).
Verena Winiwarter (ed.), “Environmental History in Europe from 1994 to 2004: Enthusiasm and Consolidation”, Environment and History, 10(2004): 501-530.
With contributions by: Marco Armiero, Petra van Dam, Andreas Dix, Per Eliasson, Poul Holm, Leos Jelecek, Robert A. Lambert, Genevieve Massard-Guilbaud, Manuel Gonzales de Molina, Timo Myllyntaus, Jan Oosthoek, Christian Pfister and Lajos Racz.
Jan Oosthoek and Barry Gills, “Humanity at the Crossroads: The Globalization of Environmental Crisis”, Globalization, vol. 2 (2005) 3, 283-291. Download paper (PDF).
Jan Oosthoek, “The Gleneagles G8 summit and climate change: a lack of leadership”, Globalizations, vol. 2 (2005) 3, 443-446. Download paper (PDF).
Jan Oosthoek, “Thema’s uit de Britse bosgeschiedenis”, Leidschrift, Vol. 21 (2006) 1, 145-157.
Article charting British woodland history in special issue of Leidschrift on the history of culture and nature.
Download article (PDF, in Dutch)
Jan Oosthoek, “The IPCC and the Ozone Hole: a Warning from History”, Globalizations, March 2008, Vol. 5, No. 1, 63-66.
Download paper (PDF).
Jan Oosthoek, “Worlds Apart? The Scottish Forestry Tradition and the Development of Forestry in India”, Journal of Irish and Scottish Studies, Vol 3 (2010) issue 1, 61-74. Download article (PDF).
Jan Oosthoek, ‘Dealing with Climate Change: the National and International Arena’, in: Mark Levene (ed.), Past Actions, Present Woes, Future Potential: Rethinking History in the Light of Anthropogenic Climate Change. A Model University Syllabus for History and Related Subjects (Warwick: Higher Education Academy, 2010), pp. 95-106. Download chapter (PDF).
Jan Oosthoek, “The Dust Veil Event, 536 CE”, contributed to “What Should We Remember? A Global Poll Among Environmental Historians”,
Compiled and introduced by Frank Uekötter, Global Environment, 11 (2013), pp. 209-210.
Download article (PDF).
Sean Kheraj and K. Jan Oosthoek, “Online digital communication, networking, and environmental history”, in: Jocelyn Thorpe, Stephanie Rutherford and L. Anders Sandberg (eds.), Methodological Challenges in Nature-Culture and Environmental History Research (London: Routledge, 2016), pp 231-245. Download chapter (PDF).
Jan Oosthoek and Barry K.Gills (eds.), The Globalization of Environmental Crisis (London: Routledge, 2007)
This collection of essays addresses what is arguably the most pressing and urgent issue of our time – the continuing development of the global environmental crisis and the need for new and urgent responses to them by the world community.
The contributors include social scientists, environmental historians, anthropologists, and science policy researchers, and together they give an overview of the history of the globalization of environmental crisis over the past several decades, both in terms of the science of measurement and the types of policy and public responses that have emerged to date.
For more information visit Routledge or
K. Jan Oosthoek, Conquering the Highlands: A History of the Afforestation of the Scottish uplands (Canberra: ANU Press, 2013)
Deforestation of Scotland began millennia ago and by the early 20th century woodland cover was down to about six per cent of the total land area. A century later woodland cover had tripled. Most of the newly established forestry plantations were created on elevated land with wet peaty soils and high wind exposure, not exactly the condition in which forests naturally thrive. This book tells the story of how 20th century foresters devised ways to successfully reforest the poor Scottish uplands, land that was regarded as unplantable, to fulfil the mandate they had received from the Government and wider society to create a timber reserve. It raises the question whether the adopted forestry practice was the only viable means to create forests in the Scottish Highlands by examining debates within the forestry community about the appearance of the forests and their long- term ecological prospects. Finally, the book argues that the long held ecological convictions among foresters and pressure from environmentalists came together in the late 20th century to create more environmentally sensitive forestry.
Available as a free e-book from the ANU Press website. Print-on-demand copies can also be bought from ANU Press or .
Managing northern Europe’s forests: Histories from the Age of Improvement to the Age of Ecology
Edited by K. Jan Oosthoek and Richard Hölzl
Published by Berghahn Books, February 2018
This New book will present in eleven chapters a history of state forestry in the countries of northern Europe from the early modern period to the present. It covers the origins of forestry policy, fundamental policy aims, the functioning and organisations of forestry, forest management, wood supply, regulations, forest statistics, wood depletion, growing stock, forest conservation, and landscape protection. The chapters demonstrate how state building and resource use were interconnected and how transnational knowledge transfers helped to build national policies and institutions. Education, trade, warfare and technological development facilitated the transitions from forest cover decline to reforestation. The set-backs, the social conflicts, and the power struggles this process entailed receive critical examination in this volume. The study covers the following nine countries: Finland, Norway, Sweden, Denmark, Germany, Poland, Netherlands, Belgium, and Britain.
For more information visit Berghahn’s website.
Jan Oosthoek, “T.C. Smout (eds.), Scotland since Prehistory. Natural change & human impact”, In:Tijdschrift voor Ecologische Geschiedenis, vol. 2 (1996) 1, p. 30.
Download English version (PDF).
Jan Oosthoek, “Ruddiman, William F., Plows, Plagues and Petroleum: How Humans took Control of Climate”, Environmental History, vol. 12 (2007) 1, 169-170.
Jan Oosthoek, “T.C. Smout, Alan R. MacDonald and Fiona Watson, A History of the Native Woodlands of Scotland”, Environment and History, vol. 13 (2007) 3, 370-372. Download review (PDF).
Jan Oosthoek, “Harold K. Steen, Jack Ward Thomas: The Journals of a Forest Service Chief”,Environment and History, vol. 13 (2007) 3, 373-374. Download review (PDF).
Jan Oosthoek, “Michael Williams, Deforesting the Earth. From Prehistory to Global Crisis. An Abridgement”. Environmental History, vol. 14 (2009) 2, 369-371.
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