Date of Award

Spring 2022

Project Type


Program or Major


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy

First Advisor

Andrew D Coppens

Second Advisor

Catherine Ashcraft

Third Advisor

Lara Gengarelly


The overarching aim of this dissertation is to expand evidence and theory of adult identity processes in the context of environmental stewardship, as well as to provide knowledge and recommendations to environmental stewardship and environmental education professionals. The intent is to better understand variation in how adult environmental stewards report on and value their own engagement with both sociocultural and natural systems. This line of inquiry stems from the fundamental claim that environmental stewardship activity is not singularly based on environmental content knowledge but is also related to forms of cultural and social engagement. By recognizing these dual aspects of environmental stewardship, organizers and educators can provide better support and resources for environmental stewardship efforts. This dissertation contains three manuscripts, two empirical and one conceptual work, that explore the sociocultural dimensions relevant to adult engagement in environmental stewardship.