Explore the Human Element
CONSERVATION // NATURAL RESOURCES // PEOPLE // BEHAVIOR // ACTION
Human behavior causes many social-environmental issues but is also the means to solve them.
T.H.E. Lab studies human behavior, decision-making, and behavior change in the context of conservation and natural resources management.
We use the human sciences—psychology, sociology, behavioral science—with survey methods, experiments, and statistical modeling to understand the nature of and reasons for behavior.
We study (a) norms, rules, and institutions; (b) cognitive and social processes, and (c) individual and group dynamics to inform practice and policy.
Theory is central to our research on how human actions interact with resource management and conservation outcomes. Several theoretical lens inform our investigations of:
Behavioral influences operating in social-environmental contexts;
Cognitive, structural, technological, and procedural elements;
Formal and informal institutions
Social norms and normative social beliefs are a central focus, including their application to practice and policy.
T.H.E. Lab uses psychological, sociological, and behavioral science theories, methods, and principles in real-world contexts to address conservation issues via a collaborative, team-based approach.
We collaborate with partners like the Idaho Department of Fish and Game to draw on their expertise and experience as we investigate behavior and decision-making in a context-specific manner.
T.H.E. Lab's conceptual and applied approaches facilitate research questions that are behavior- and practice-focused so as to be relevant and useful to governments, businesses, organizations, and specific segments of the public.
Oriented this way, we can pragmatically:
Identify and inform significant decision-making factors;
Improve the design and application of behavior change strategies;
Influence public and private sector practices and policies via rigorous science and principled design.