Trevor S. Lies

Department of Psychology

University of Kansas

I am a Ph.D. candidate in social psychology at the University of Kansas. My research sits at the intersection of cultural and environmental psychology. I use a variety of research methods to investigate how people engage with and understand environmentalism, environmental justice, and climate change.

I also maintain an applied focus guided by a desire to apply research to real-world issues in our communities.


Trevor's research focuses on how people construct and engage with a variety of issues related to the environment. One (mixed-methods) line of work has revealed associations between white racial identification and climate change skepticism (Lies et al., 2022). Another project (in-prep) has shown novel relationships between political conservatism and various forms of environmental concern. A third line of research has demonstrated the importance of community as a buffer against the psychological toll of climate change anxiety among environmental activists. For his written comprehensive area paper, he is working toward a metatheoretical paper regarding how environmental psychology might more strongly embrace a sociocultural perspective in research and theory. 

In 2016, Trevor graduated with distinction from the University of Kansas with a bachelor's in Psychology and a minor in Spanish. He was awarded the 2019 Senior Award for Outstanding Performance by the KU Department of Psychology. In 2021, Trevor received his Master of Arts degree in Psychology from the University of Kansas.

Trevor strives to be an interdisciplinary, methodologically plural, applied scholar. His research thus far spans quantitative, qualitative, and archival methods. He has also worked directly with local non-profit organizations such as The Resilient Activist and local governmental organizations such as the Douglas County (KS) Sustainability Office. Trevor currently oversees the Cultural Psychology Research Group (CPRG) at the University of Kansas where he plans to graduate with a Ph.D. in Social Psychology in the Spring of 2024. He currently lives in Tucson, Arizona with his wife Valentina.


2021 M.A. Psychology, University of Kansas                                                                   

            Thesis title: Investment in Whiteness and Climate Change Skepticism

2019 B.A. Psychology, University of Kansas

      Major: Psychology

      Minor: Spanish

      Thesis title: Construal Level and Race: Perceptions of Responsibility in School Shootings