Brett L. Walker is Regents Professor of History at Montana State University, Bozeman. He received a Guggenheim Fellowship in 2013 for his project, "The Slow Dying: Asbestos and the Unmaking of the Modern World." He studies environmental history, the history of human health, and the history of science. His research explores how humans have altered the environment, or have been altered by the environment, across both historical time and geographic space. He investigates how climate, geography, and microbes have imposed their way onto the human past, as well as how humans have sliced, burned, extracted and engineered their needs and desires onto Earth and its living organisms. His research area is early modern and modern Japanese history, as well as comparative world history.