May-Britt Öhman
May-Britt Öhman

May-Britt Öhman

Senior Lecturer, guest, Guest Researcher
Luleå University of Technology
Social Sciences
Department of Business Administration, Technology and Social Sciences

I earned my PhD degree in History of Technology in 2007, at the Royal Institute of Technology with the dissertation Taming exotic beauties: Swedish hydropower constructions in Tanzania in the era of development assistance, 1960s-1990s. 

Since then I have lectured and researched financed mainly by external funds from the Swedish Research Council and FORMAS. December 2008 until December 2018 I was a researcher at the Centre for Gender Research at Uppsala University. From January 2017 I am at the Centre for Multidisciplinary research on racism, CEMFOR, at Uppsala University.  

Since fall 2017 I am part time guest researcher at the Unit of History at Luleå University of Technology. 

I have taught at Uppsala University, the Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm (KTH), SLU in Uppsala, Stockholm University and Södertörn University.  I have been supervising master students at Birkbeck, University of London; University of Amsterdam, University of Bern and University of Gothenburg.

I am currently co-supervising three PhD students at three different universities: 1 Scandinavian Studies, Univ of Washington, Seattle; 2  Faculty of Social Sciences, University of Duisburg-Essen 3. Rachel Carson Centre/ Ludwig-Maximilians-Universität München.

I have also been guest lecturer at the Centre for Studies in Science Policy, Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi, India, and at the Department of Education, Rikkyo University, Tokyo.  

Fall 2015 I was a guest researcher at the Department of Gender Studies, UCLA, University of California, Los Angeles.

My focus is on safety, security, risk, resilience, environment, technoscience, large dams, dam safety, water resources and hydropower.

My geographical focus is on the Arctic, but I also do comparative studies with other geographical areas. I rely on theories and methodologies within History of Science and Technology; Indigenous studies/methodologies; Sámi related studies; Post colonial  and decolonial studies; STS - Science and Technology Studies.    I do cross- and supradisciplinary research collaborations, with other scholars - from humanities and social sciences as well as science and technology - as well as with ex-academia persons with knowledges of environment, water and livelihoods. 


On my website you can find more about me and my work   My publications are available via the website of Uppsala University. 


Research projects I have worked or currently work within are:

2019-2022 Living without oil?!  Rethinking relations with lands and waters with Indigenous Land Based Expertise for a transition towards a fossil free welfare society, FORMAS Dnr 2019-01975, 7,5 MSEK within the Swedish National Research Programme on Climate 

2017-2022 main applicant/ project leader Dálkke: Indigenous Climate Change Studies FORMAS  Dnr 2017-01923, 8, 933 MSEK, within the Swedish National Research Programme on Climate

2018 ”Forest Sámi Past, Present and Futures”, Seed Box grant.     555 KSEK

 Co-applicant within the Environmental Humanities program supported by the Swedish Foundation for Strategic Environmental Research, The Seed Box: An Environmental Humanities Collaboratory - Cultivating Ecological Innovations” (4 M Euros, MISTRA/Formas 2015-18

2017-2019 main applicant/ project leader. FORMAS, future research leaders: ”Safe and Sustainable Energy Futures in Sápmi: Assumptions and Actions, Visions and Decisions “ 2 997 MSEK

2017-2019 co-applicant, Artistic research. Swedish research councilGive me my perspective. The traces of
Race Biology in Sámi, main applicant Katarina Pirak Sikku. 5 MSEK

2016-2018  main applicant/ project leader (we are three project leaders) Science, validation, partial perspectives: Knowledge production beyond the norms”  SEK 2,6 MSEK Faculty of Arts, Uppsala University

2012-15 Main applicant/PI “Rivers, resistance and resilience: Sustainable futures in Sápmi” FORMAS Grants for sustainable development research in the social sciences and humanities areas,  6 MSEK.

2010-12 Main applicant/PI VR “DAMMED: Security, risk and resilience around the dams of Sub Arctica”. 4, 339 MSEK

2009-10 Main applicant/PI. VR, postdoc 2 years. "Situated perspectives on hydropower exploitation in Sápmi: Swedish technological expansion in the 20th century and its impacts on indigenous peoples."

I run the project on Sámi Land Free University, please see more at