Anthropometric history has become an integral part of the study of modernization processes – what are the interconnections between better diets, increased productivity, technology change and improved health of offspring? Changing bodies – mostly for the better – are concomitant with the agrarian and industrial revolutions. Understanding this “technophysio evolution” is one of the biggest challenges for social scientists and historians alike. Adult human height is the outcome of a protracted process of growth, which during the twentieth century was not completed until the early twenties. The process is influenced most of all by genetic potential, but is strongly affected as well by nutrition, disease, work and stress (e.g., caused by the bereavement of a parent). It is difficult to find data to connect (changing) early-life conditions to adult height, but this is needed if we are to fully understand the causes and effects of improved health. Increasingly, researchers use longitudinal data to study heights from a life-course perspective: How have intergenerational transfers, (dynamic) family settings, interactions with the (disease) environment, and period effects resulted in (delayed) growth? Furthermore, life courses make it possible to study outcomes of stature in terms of work capacity, chances in the marriage market, and longevity – controlling for early-life conditions. Eventually, we might find selection mechanisms that may explain why people become taller and taller over the generations. Professor Kok will demonstrate the research potential of using multi-generational life-course data enriched with anthropometric information.