Denise Pilato

A photo of Denise Pilato


Technology and Professional Services Management

126 Sill


[email protected]

Professional Summary

Denise Pilato has taught in the College of Engineering and Technology at Eastern Michigan University since 2000. She currently serves as a professor and program coordinator for the Master of Science in Technology Studies program and teaches in the technology studies master and doctoral programs. She teaches courses related to the social impact of technology, including history, culture, and gender issues. Her scholarly research agenda includes the study of 19th and early 20th century American women inventors. She regularly presents new findings based on primary original research on women inventors at national and international professional conferences and publishes on the topic in academic and popular journals.

Interests and Expertise

Her scholarly research agenda includes the study of nineteenth and early twentieth century American women inventors.

  • History of American technology
  • Technology, culture, and gender
  • Social impact of technology

Her interests also include the study of patterns of change and continuity related to technology, culture, and values in a global context, as exemplified in the study abroad course that she offers in southern Italy and Sicily. In this course, graduate students are immersed in the exploration and analysis of ancient technology and contemporary values in Naples and Sicily.

Her interests continue in global and international education through her ongoing support of Fulbright students and faculty, as well as work on EMU's global initiatives.

Courses Taught

INDT 150: Understanding Technology
INDT 420: Women and Technology
INDT 500: Introduction to Technology
INDT 501: History of Technology
INDT 528: Technology, Gender, and Pop Culture
INDT 592: Special Topics
Study Abroad Program: Naples, Italy
Social Impact of First Century Roman Technology
Technology and Culture
Car Culture in America
INDT 601: Multidisciplinary Seminar in Technology
INDT 699: MLS Capstone Experience

Selected Publications

  • "Illumination or Illusion: Women Inventors at the 1893 World's Columbian Fair."
    Expected Fall, 2016: Journal of Illinois State Historical Society
  • "Representations of Technology and Industry in Midwestern Literature" Dictionary of
    Midwestern Literature, Vol. 2, 2014
  • "The Journey In-Between: Clarissa Britain, Inventor, (1816–1895)" Inter-Disciplinary Press, 2013‎
  • "Clarissa Britain: An Enigmatic Inventor"
    Michigan History, January/February, 2012
  • Signal Success: An Illuminating History of One Woman, One Invention" in Scientific
    Cultures, Technological Challenges: A Transatlantic Perspective.
  • Universitätsverlag Winter (UWH) Heidelberg, Germany [ISBN 078-3-8253- 5580-7] 2009.
  • "The Use of Coston Flares by the U.S. Navy in Civil War Blockade Operations: "A
    Powerful Auxiliary of Incalculable Value" Minerva: Women & War. Vol 3 No 1, Spring, 2009.

Selected Presentations

  • "Women Inventors at the 1893 Columbia's World Fair: Mortal Vision or Progressive Ideology?"
    National Popular Culture and American Culture Conference, Chicago, IL, April 1618, 2014
  • "Names, Numbers, and Naysayers: Women Inventors at the 1893 World's Fair"
    National Popular Culture and American Culture Conference, New Orleans, LA, April 14, 2015
  • "The Journey In-Between: Clarissa Britain, Inventor, (18161895)"
    4th Global Conference, Interdisciplinary.Net: Storytelling Global Reflections on Narrative, Prague, Czech Republic, May 2124, 2013
  • "Clarissa Britain: The Story of a Remarkable Inventor"
    Berrien County Genealogical Society, Lincoln Public Library, Stevensville, MI, April 17, 2013
  • "Illumination or Illusion: Women Inventors at the 1893 World's Columbian Exposition"
    National Popular Culture and American Culture Conference, Washington, D.C. March 2730, 2013
  • "Poster, Poster on the Wall... Generating Critical Thinking"
    International Society for Exploring Teaching and Learning, San Diego, CA Oct 1315, 2011
  • "The Fulbright Experience: Risks and Rewards"
    Midwest Regional Comparative and International Education Society, Eastern Michigan University, Oct 2930, 2010
  • "One Woman, One War"
    Fulbright Lecture Series: Media, Technology, and Society, Amerika-Institut Ludwig-Maximillians-Universtat, Munich, Germany, May 6, 2008

Patents / Awards / Grants

She was awarded a Fulbright Scholarship in 2008, which included teaching at the University of Catania in Sicily for five months and worked with Italian undergraduate and doctoral students.