Archive for the ‘Ecopsychology’ category

Dr. Thomas Doherty’s Brown Bag presentation at Port HQ: Sort It And Win Program

November 11th, 2012


Portsmouth: Sort It And Win Program a Success
By Erin Anderson

October 2012

There are more than 30 food and beverage retailers at PDX serving over a million passengers each month generating over $4,000,000 in sales—and tens of thousands of pounds of food waste!

PDXfoodwastePDX began collecting food waste in 2003 and to date has diverted more than 1,400 tons from the landfill. Unfortunately, a recent waste audit performed by the PDX Waste Minimization Team showed that even with a food waste program in place, nearly 60% of the materials in the landfill-bound waste stream were compostable food and fibers.

In an effort to reduce the amount of food waste and compostable materials sent to the landfill, the PDX Waste Minimization Team set a goal to increase food waste collection 20% by 2013. The PDX Waste Minimization Team worked closely with the PDX Concessions team to develop and implement a three month (April 1-June 30) rewards program. The program was based in part on insights from Eco psychologist Dr. Thomas Doherty’s Brown Bag presentation at Port HQ, which focused on the psychology of organizational change in achieving sustainability goals. Once a week each tenant kitchen was randomly visited by Waste Minimization staff, and employees were rewarded when observed to be properly separating food waste from landfill waste – and supporting the program goals. Employees were given a $5 gift card for their efforts on the spot, creating an instant positive feedback.

The Sort It and Win rewards program was successful in many ways. Over 200 employees were rewarded for their efforts and over 55 tons of food waste were collected during the three months, a 57% increase over the same period in 2011. The regular presence of the PDX Waste Minimization Team in each kitchen provided an opportunity to build relationships with employees while random visits and immediate rewards worked to encourage and incentivize behavior change.

Results of the Sort It and Win program continue to inspire tenants to better manage food wastes. As of September 2012, 152 tons of food waste has been collected, reflecting a 41% increase over the same time period in 2011. The 2012 food waste diversion program has already exceeded the yearly food waste total for 2011 (147 tons).

Ecopsychology in Counseling Certificate Info Session – November 6th at Lewis & Clark

November 3rd, 2012

lcsmEcopsychology in Counseling Certificate Info Session

Date: November 6 5:00pm – 7:00pm
Lewis & Clark – Graduate Campus, South Chapel

grass-against-blue-skyPlease join us for an Information Session to learn more about Lewis & Clark’s Ecopsychology in Counseling Certificate program.

The Ecopsychology in Counseling Certificate explores the relationships between mental health, well-being and the natural environment and ways in which counseling psychologists can contribute to conservation and sustainability.

Students and faculty in the program will be there to share their work and answer questions of prospective students.

If you are unable to attend this Information Session but are interested in this certificate program, please contact the Center for Community Engagement at 503-768-6040 or

4-day Conservation Psychology Institute (CPI) October 2012

September 4th, 2012


Thomas Doherty will be facilitating a week long training for the Conservation Psychology Institute (CPI) in Pittsburgh, PA.

© James Balog.*

© James Balog

“Drivers of phenomena such as climate change, loss of species’ habitats, and ocean acidification rarely are the result of malicious intent, but rather the consequence of the lifestyles of billions of humans. Accordingly, conservation must change behavior.”

(CPI faculty member, P. Wesley Schultz, in his article “Conservation Means Behavior” in the journal, Conservation Biology 25: 1080-183, 2011.)

About the Institute (CPI)

© Molly Steinwald

© Molly Steinwald

Antioch University New England and Phipps Conservatory and Botanical Gardens have joined together to run an intensive 4-day Conservation Psychology  Institute (CPI) designed for professionals in museum, zoo, aquarium,  botanic garden, nature center, environmental advocacy, media, and other  sectors with broad public engagement opportunities to learn from an  internationally recognized team of faculty about relevant psychological  theories and strategies for changing behavior for environmental and  human well-being.The goal of the CPI is to equip participants with knowledge and skills in the fields of  conservation psychology, environmental psychology and ecopsychology  to effectively bring about environmental behavior change via work in  their own institutions and sectors.

This is accomplished through a blend of:

  • lecture presentations
  • hands-on learning and interactive sessions
  • applied and scenario-based activities drawn from faculty and participant experiences
  • one on one mentoring with experts
  • small and large group dialog, and
  • networking with a diverse group of peers and faculty

CPI Participants will learn about


© Brian Skerry

  • The social and developmental determinants of environmental worldviews and identity.
  • Frameworks to understand common belief systems and environmental value sets of constituents and stakeholders.
  • Recognizing and working with cultural, socio-economic and religious/spiritual diversity.
  • Effective behavior change, organizational development and social marketing techniques.
  • Emotional intelligence (understanding of emotional processes in self and others) applied to conservation settings to improve public speaking, group facilitation, training, leadership and team building, and conflict resolution.
  • Research findings on the stress-reducing and other psychological benefits of access to restorative natural settings (wilderness and nearby nature).
  • Development of environmental concern and responsible action.
  • Role of nature in self-care and insight.
  • Tools for self-care, avoiding burnout and maintaining motivation, creativity and resiliency in environmental work.
  • Numerous applications for conservation biology; environmental educational programs; zoos, aquariums and museums; climate change mitigation or adaptation programs; sustainable businesses and organizations; and environmental advocacy.
  • And more…

  • __________________________________________________________________________________________________________
    * James Balog. Disko Bay, Greenland. 15 March 2008. A massive chunk of the Ilulissat Glacier floats out to sea. From James Balog’s ICE: Portraits of Vanishing Glaciers, Rizzoli International, available this fall.

    Climate Change Panel at the Open Forum Portland Climate Change Event

    May 31st, 2012

    ofplogoThomas will speak on a Climate Change Panel at the Open Forum Portland Climate Change Event Saturday June 2, 2012.

    Thomas will join climate scientists, mental health experts and environmental change agents to discuss the topic: In what ways can the challenges of a warming planet lead to transformation?

    Saturday June 2nd, 2:30-5:30pm
    Portland State University
    SMSU Smith Memorial Student Union
    238 Browsing Lounge

    Panel Website:

    Open Forum Portland website:

    The Erb Institute for Global Sustainable Enterprise: Report from Climate Workshop Released

    May 29th, 2012
    Thomas Doherty at U of M Climate Workshop

    Thomas Doherty at U of M Climate Communication Workshop

    Thomas participated in a Workshop on Climate Communication January 19—21, 2012 at the Ross School of Business at University of Michigan  in Ann Arbor.

    The Erb Institute and the Union of Concerned Scientists gathered 90 leading scholars, business leaders, policy makers, advocates, religious leaders and journalists at U of M to explore how better to communicate climate science to a skeptical public and mobilize progress.

    This summary report distills the collective wisdom of that landmark two-day event. Please read the report and share it with those who you think may benefit from its insights.


    Go to the conference page;
    Watch the TownHall video

    Survey Report Summary

    Mindfulness and Sustainability: Zen practices for a resilient self and planet With Thomas Doherty and Gregory Hill

    May 13th, 2012

    We will explore the intersections of personal and environmental sustainability in the light of Zen Buddhist teaching and practice.

    Participants will work to recognize, validate, and celebrate their perceptions and emotions regarding the natural environment, nurture themselves, and engage in grounded action that manifests their unique sustainability visions.

    The day will also have an introduction to mindfulness meditation and guided meditation sessions.

    Saturday, June 9th, 2012
    9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
    $65 Includes vegetarian/vegan lunch
    Six CEU credits

    zcomain_logoHeart of Wisdom Zen Temple
    Zen Community of Oregon
    6401 NE 10th Avenue
    Portland, OR 97211

    Co-sponsored by the Ecopsychology in Counseling Certificate Program at the Lewis & Clark Graduate School and Zen Community of Oregon

    For more information and to register:


    Thomas Doherty, Psy.D.,
    called by The New York Times,

    “the most prominent American

    co-directs the Ecopsychology
    Certificate Program at the Lewis
    and Clark Graduate School in
    Psychology in Portland Oregon.
    Thomas Joseph Doherty, Psy.D.

    Thomas Joseph Doherty, Psy.D.

    Thomas Doherty, Psy.D. The New York Times called Thomas Doherty “the most prominent American advocate of a growing discipline known as ‘ecopsychology.’” Thomas is a psychologist in Portland, Oregon who specializes in working with people and organizations with ecological values and provides consultation on environmental identity and behavior change. He draws on his training in clinical and health psychology and his background as a wilderness therapist and professional whitewater rafting guide. In addition to his consultation practice in Portland, Thomas trains counselors at the Lewis & Clark Graduate School and is the Editor-in-Chief of the journal Ecopsychology. Thomas helped author the American Psychological Association’s Climate Change Task Force Report in 2009 and his paper on the psychological impacts of global climate change was published in the American Psychologist in June, 2011. Thomas has provided talks and workshops for organizations such as the American Psychological Association, Psychologists for Social Responsibility, Natural Step USA, New Season’s Markets, the Port of Portland, the Bioneers, the Association of Oregon Recyclers, and the Oregon Counseling Association.

    Gregory Hill

    Gregory Hill

    Gregory Hill Gregory Hill is a professor of Mathematics and Environmental Studies and Chair of Mathematics at the University of Portland, where he also co-founded the Sustainability program in the Masters in Business Administration. He has served for ten years as the President and Senior Research Associate of the Institute for Culture and Ecology, a research collaborative founded on the principle that human systems and ecosystems must be valued and studied as a unified whole. Putting research into action, he leads projects in Indonesia addressing issues of biodiversity, climate change and economic well-being for forest dependent communities. A life-long practitioner in the Zen Buddhist tradition, he has been a member of the Zen Community of Oregon for many years, serving on the Board of Directors and as a mediation instructor.

    The Conservation Psychology Institute Summer 2012 at AUNE

    May 12th, 2012

    The Conservation Psychology Institute

    What: Conservation Psychology Institute (CPI) Program
    Summer 2012, June 23-27
    Where: Antioch University New England, Keene, NH


    CPSI 2011 Cohort

    This 5-day summer intensive program brings together scholars, students, professionals and a gifted psychology and organizational development faculty to explore how the tools of psychology can be used in a wide range of effective conservation and sustainability practices. Participants will gain a better understanding of the complex social, emotional, cognitive, behavioral and experiential dynamics inherent to conservation issues and effective strategies for sustainability leadership.

    Topics to be covered include the determinants of diverse environmental worldviews and behaviors; ways to understand and work with emotional responses to environmental issues; and design of effective educational, behavior change and organizational leadership initiatives. Students will be guided to applying psychological perspectives to work in contexts such as conservation biology; environmental education programs; zoos, aquariums and museums; climate change mitigation or adaptation programs; resource management and land use planning; municipal sustainability programs; green business and organizations; and in private and public sphere environmental advocacy.

    The course includes small group learning, individual mentoring, real-world case studies and field experiences.

    Who would benefit from this program?

    • Educators, researchers and students in various disciplines interested in conservation psychology.
    • Conservation or sustainability professionals in the Northeastern U.S. and beyond, including those in federal, state or local government agencies and nonprofit organizations.
    • Environmental and sustainability advocates.
    • Individuals from other green organizations and businesses interested in learning about conservation psychology principles.

    For more information contact:
    Conservation Psychology Institute, Antioch University New England
    or email

    Oregon State Bar Sustainable Future :: The Long View

    March 29th, 2012

    ORstatebarlogoThe Long View

    The Oregon State Bar Sustainable Future section publishes a quarterly newsletter, The Long View.

    Thomas was featured in the Spring 2012 No. 9 edition of The Long View with the article “Psychology as if the Whole World Mattered.”

    Editorial: Work Style Magazine

    March 28th, 2012

    WorkStyleSS Thomas was featured in an Editorial
    on page 17 of  Work Style Magazine, #8.2011

    Activists, The Resource of Business pdf

    “Environmental activists can be viewed from a variety of different perspectives. Savvy companies can open a dialogue with activists and advocates, and take advantage of their broad range of experience in order to help boost and hone companies’ environmental platform and sustainability practices.”

    The Psychology Behind Sustainable Practices–At Work and At Home :: Port of Portland Brown Bag

    February 23rd, 2012



    The Psychology Behind Sustainable Practices–At Work and At Home Brown Bag

    Why do many people go the extra mile to practice sustainable living while others don’t bother? What’s the key to understanding behaviors for living sustainably? How do YOU define sustainability?

    The Port of Portland participants joined Dr. Thomas Doherty for a noontime Lunch and Learn seminar on Wednesday, Feb. 22, in the HQ 8th Floor Atrium.

    Dr. Doherty specializes in working with groups implementing sustainability programs and helped the Port better understand sustainable practices and discussed ways to establish better ecological and socially conscious practices in every day life.

    Also considered were ways to break down barriers to change by understanding and motivating sustainability behaviors and best practices for communicating with and motivating different stakeholders to drive behavior changes. Dr. Doherty examined the need to recognize and honor different opinions and beliefs, set realistic goals, and use appropriate incentives.


    Thomas Doherty, Psy.D.

    Thomas Doherty, Psy.D.

    Thomas Joseph Doherty is a leader in ecopsychology–a bridge between the world of scientific research and the world of therapy and action. In addition to his consulting practice in Portland, Dr. Doherty trains counselors at the Lewis & Clark Graduate School and is the Editor-in-Chief of the academic journal Ecopsychology. He helped author the American Psychological Association’s Climate Change Task Force Report in 2009. Dr. Doherty has provided talks and workshops for many organizations such as the American Psychological Association, Natural Step USA, New Season’s Markets, the Bioneers, the Association of Oregon Recyclers, and the Oregon Counseling Association.