Yuting Dong
Yuting Dong Office: Harper East Tower 687 Office hours: Thursday, 12:30-2:30pm Phone: (773) 834-4863 Email Interests:

Japanese history, colonialism, history of labor and expertise, and environmental history

Assistant Professor of East Asian History and the College

Harvard University, PhD '21



As a historian of modern Japan and East Asia, I am interested in questions on colonialism, history of labor and expertise, and environmental history. Currently, I am finishing a manuscript on Japan’s infrastructure empire, which explores how Japanese colonial officials obtained knowledge and honed their technological skills from interacting with various local intermediaries and laborers and how the former appropriated the latter’s knowledge to ground their imperial dominance in what historically referred to as Manchuria. By reading infrastructure as archives, this manuscript sheds light on those interactions that were often hidden in colonial archives. 

I am also working on a second project that examines the commodification and politicization of air in Japan’s colonial empire.

Having graduated from Harvard University with a Ph.D. in May 2021, I was an Academy Scholar at Harvard Academy for International and Area Studies before joining the History Department in July 2022.

You can find my work here:

I have also published a co-edited volume on archival practices and the future of archives, Adventure, Inquiry, Discovery: CLIR Mellon Fellows and the Archives, published on the CLIR-Mellon Fellowships’ official website.