Corinna Schlombs Headshot

Corinna Schlombs

Associate Professor

Department of History
College of Liberal Arts

Office Location

Corinna Schlombs

Associate Professor

Department of History
College of Liberal Arts


Diploma, Bielefeld University (Germany); MA, Ph.D., University of Pennsylvania


Research Interests: History of Technology, Social and Cultural History of Computing, Business History and Gender Studies

Dr. Schlombs’s research focuses on technology and capitalism in transatlantic relations. In her current book project, she investigates transatlantic transfers of productivity culture and technology in the two decades before and after World War II. Productivity, a statistical measure of output per worker, came to encapsulate the American economic system, and transatlantic debates about productivity called into question the notion of the capitalist West during the Cold War conflict.

Dr. Schlombs received her Diplom in Sociology from Bielefeld University in Germany, and her Ph.D. in the History and Sociology of Science from the University of Pennsylvania. She has published articles and book chapters on international computing and computing and gender. Most recently, her research has been supported through a National Science Foundation Scholars Award that enabled her to focus on her book project.

Dr. Schlombs teaches classes in the History of Information and Communication Technologies, International Business History and Modern German History. She has advised student projects in computing and gaming history, museum studies, and business history. 


Select Scholarship

Full Length Book
Schlombs, Corinna. Productivity Machines: German Appropriations of American Technology from Mass Production to Computer Automation. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press, 2019. Print.
Journal Paper
Schlombs, Corinna. "Unerkannte Personen der Computertechnik: Dateneingabe im Bankwesen." Ferrum 91. (2019): 86-92. Print.
Schlombs, Corinna. "The ‘IBM Family’: American Welfare Capitalism, Labor and Gender in Postwar Germany." IEEE Annals of the History of Computing 39. 4 (2017): 12-26. Web.
Schlombs, Corinna. "A Cost-Saving Machine: Computing at the German Allianz Insurance Company." Information and Culture 52. 1 (2017): 31-63. Print.

Currently Teaching

3 Credits
This honors seminar is a foundational course that examines how our social worlds are linked to our natural and built worlds. The corresponding emphasis on inquiry, analysis, and interpretation facilitates student-engaged learning. In exploring pertinent place and space related issues/topics through an experiential, active, and site-specific curricular focused learning, various aspects of the human condition are discovered. The theme or topic of this honors seminar, as chosen by the instructor, is announced in the subtitle as well as course notes and is developed in the syllabus. The honors seminar integrates the required Year One curriculum.
1 - 9 Credits
A program of study executed by an individual student with assistance and guidance by an instructor, outside a classroom setting. Guidelines for designing and gaining approval for an independent study are provided in College of Liberal Arts Policy I.D.
3 Credits
The internet and cell phones seem to have revolutionized our society, changing how we learn about new things, relate to each other and understand ourselves. This course investigates the history of information and communication technologies to cast new light on these developments. We will ask how people formed political opinions, what ethical concerns new information and communication technologies raised, and how technologies changed the lives of the people using them. This course helps students understand the social, cultural, and ethical implications of revolutionary information and communication technologies.

In the News

  • September 24, 2021

    historic photo of women in a cooking lab.

    Registration open for worldwide Mechanics Institute virtual conference

    Registration is open for Mechanics’ Institutes Worldwide 2021, a free virtual conference on Oct. 15 honoring the 200th anniversary of the founding of the first Mechanics Institute in Edinburgh, Scotland. RIT's Corinna Schlombs and Liz Call will virtually join experts from around the world as they share knowledge on the start of the Mechanics’ Institute movement in the 19th century and what the movement represents today.