David A. Kirsch Directory Page

David A. Kirsch

David A. Kirsch

Associate Professor

Faculty Director, Center for Social Value Creation

Ph.D., History from Stanford University


4556 Van Munching Hall

David A. Kirsch is Associate Professor of Management and Entrepreneurship in the M&O Department at the University of Maryland's Robert H. Smith School of Business. From 1996 to 2001, Kirsch held various adjunct and visiting appointments at the Anderson Graduate School of Management, University of California, Los Angeles. He received his PhD in history from Stanford University in 1996. His research interests include industry emergence, technological choice, technological failure and the role of entrepreneurship in the emergence of new industries. In 2000 Rutgers University Press published his revised dissertation, The Electric Vehicle and the Burden of History. His work on the early history of the automobile industry has also been published in Business History Review and Technology and Culture. In 2003, his co-authored article on the Electric Vehicle Company received the IEEE Life Members Prize from the Society for the History of Technology. Kirsch is also interested in methodological problems associated with historical scholarship in the digital age. With the support of grants from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation and the Library of Congress, he is currently building a digital archive of the Dot Com Era that will preserve at-risk, born-digital content about business and culture during the late 1990s. 

Primary Research Areas

  • History of modern technology
  • Entrepreneurial and technological failure
  • Internet Technology Entrepreneurship
  • Global environmental management systems

Selected Publications

Kirsch, D., The Electric Vehicle and the Burden of History, (Rutgers University Press, 2000)

Mom, G., and Kirsch, D., "Technologies in Tension: Horses, Electric Trucks and the Motorization of American Cities, 1900-1925" Technology and Culture, 2001

Kirsch, D., "How Electricity Could Power the Car of Today" Nature, 2001

Honors and Awards

  • Research Grant, Alfred P. Sloan Foundation
  • Research Grant, AT&T Foundation
  • Research Grant, Hewlett Foundation

Consulting Work

  • Alternative Fuel Vehicles
  • Biotechnology
  • New Media


Social Innovation Fellows Come Together for Celebration

There’s always cause for celebration at the end of semesters, and Maryland Smith’s Social Innovation Fellows (SIF) made the most of…

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Kirsch Has an Eye on the Past

It starts with horse manure: How past problems influence the present.

Maryland Smith’s David A. Kirsch never planned on being an…

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Maryland Smith Authors Crack Code to Financial Bubbles

New Book Identifies Four-Factor Model for Predicting Next Crash

COLLEGE PARK, Md. (Feb. 19, 2019) — Beware of a great story when…

Read News Story : Maryland Smith Authors Crack Code to Financial Bubbles


History’s Top Innovators: Genius or Luck?

How early automobile entrepreneurs found an edge

Read the article : History’s Top Innovators: Genius or Luck?


The ‘Still-Weird’ Market for Meme Stocks

Read the article : The ‘Still-Weird’ Market for Meme Stocks
What's Up With GameStop?

Behind the frenzy, the short squeeze and what might happen next

Read the article : What's Up With GameStop?
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