Carnegie Mellon University

Abigail Owen

Abigail E. Owen

Director of Education, Steinbrenner Institute for Environmental Education & Research
Assistant Teaching Professor, History

5000 Forbes Avenue
Pittsburgh, PA 15213


Ph.D.: Columbia University, 2011


Owen's current projects in the Department of History both stem from her dissertation, Hidden Waters: Groundwater Histories of Iran and the Mediterranean. The first is a multi-author edited translation and commentary on al-Karaji’s 11th-century Arabic text, Treatise on the Extraction of Hidden Waters. The second project is a revision of the dissertation and its arguments, focusing on the perception of expert cultures of groundwater management, and implications for international development projects that focus on water and development. See a synopsis of the dissertation on the Dissertation Reviews website. Owen is also: 

Courses Taught

  • 79-315 The Politics of Water: Global Controversies, Past and Present
  • 79-283 Hungry World: Food and Famine in Global Perspective
  • 79-336 Introduction to Environmental Ideas
  • 79-336 Oil and Water: Mideast Perspectives on Environmental History 
  • 66-119 Grand Challenge Interdisciplinary Freshman Seminar: Feeding the World, Feeding Ourselves

Department Member Since: 2016