This article introduces non-Western policy sciences into the burgeoning field of the intellectual history of Earth system governmentality, a field that studies the ideas, institutions and material systems that enable action at the global scale. It outlines the rise of debates on the idea of the governability of the global biosphere in late Soviet Russia (1970s–1980s), focusing particularly on the extension of Vladimir Vernadskii's famous theory of the biosphere and its governance (the stage of the noosphere) into computer modeling and systems analysis. As a result, a new notion of governance as guidance through milieu arose to conceptualize global governance of the biosphere. This conceptual innovation was part of Soviet scientists’ attempt to liberalize the centrally commanded Soviet governmental system.
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