Lynn Hollen Lees (Ph.D., Harvard, 1969) was chair of the Department from 1995–2001, co-director of the Joseph H. Lauder Institute of Management and International Studies from 2002–2013, and, before her retirement, the Ombuds of the University. She also served as Vice Provost for Faculty. Her teaching was primarily in the fields of British history, European social history, history of the British Empire, and world history. She has held fellowships from the Guggenheim Foundation, the American Council of Learned Societies, and the National Endowment for the Humanities.
Much of her research centers on European cities, their social organization, and their welfare institutions. Her book, written with Paul Hohenberg, The Making of Urban Europe, 1000–1995 (1985; rev. ed. 1995) traces long term changes in European urban networks and social organization. She and her husband, Andrew Lees, collaborated on the study, Cities and the Making of Modern Europe, 1750–1914 (2007). Her interest in world history led to Global Society: The World since 1900 (with Pamela Crossley and John Servos, 2004). In recent years, her research shifted to the study of the British colonial rule in southeast Asia. Her latest book was Planting Empire, Cultivating Subjects: British Malaya, 1786–1941 (2017).