Theresa Selfa

Affiliated Faculty

Dr. Selfa is an affiliated faculty member within the Falk College Department of Nutrition and Food Studies and a Professor and Associate Chair of the Department of Environmental Studies at the SUNY College of Environmental Science and Forestry.


PhD, Cornell University, College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, Development Sociology

MCP, UC Berkeley, College of Environmental Design, City and Regional Planning

BA, Whitman College, Walla Walla, WA. English Literature

Research Focus

Social Dimensions of Food-Energy-Water Systems, Politics of Agrifood Systems and Agricultural Biotechnology, Environmental Governance, Sustainability Certification and Labelling, US and Latin America.

Research Projects


Restoration Science Center, SUNY ESF Discovery Grant, 2019-2022.

Identifying Gaps in Public Trust and Governance Recommendations for Gene Edited Foods. USDA NIFA, Social Implications of Emerging Technologies. June 2018-May 2020.

Recently Completed:

Experimental Frameworks for Evaluating Net Effects of Hydrologic Service Payments on Coupled Social-Ecohydrological Systems in Mexico. NSF CNH. Jan. 2014-Sept. 2019.

The Role of Citizen Science in Watershed Hydrology Research: Relationships between Volunteer Motivations, Data Quantity and Quality, and Decision-Making. NSF CBET EAGER. Jan. 2017- Dec. 2018.

Sustainability, Ecosystem Services, and Forest-Related Bioenergy Development across the Americas. NSF PIRE. Oct. 2012-Sept. 2018.

Lake Ontario Basin Agriculture in the Coming Decades: Room for expansion or imminent future regional water conflict? USDA AFRI Water for Agriculture Challenge Grant. May 2015-Dec. 2017.

Northeast Woody Warm Season Biomass Consortium Energy and Biofuels production for Distributed Generation. USDA CAP. Aug. 2012-July 2017.

Recent Publications

  • Bain, C., S. Lindberg, and T. Selfa. 2019. Emerging Sociotechnical Imaginaries for Gene Edited Foods in the United States: Implications for Governance. Agriculture and Human Values
  • Cordoba, D., L. Juen, T. Selfa, A. Peredo, L. Montaga, M. Santos, and D. Gobbo. 2019. Understanding local perceptions of the impacts of large-scale oil palm plantations on ecosystem services in the Brazilian Amazon. Journal of Forest Policy and Economics Vol. 109
  • Eaton, W., M. Burnham, K. Running, C. Clare Hinrichs, and T. Selfa. 2019. "Symbolic meanings, landowner support, and dedicated bioenergy crops in the rural northeastern United States." Energy Research and Social Science 52: 247-257.
  • Jones, K., S. Avila, E. Pischke, J. Salcone, D. Torrez, T. Selfa, and K. Halvorsen. 2019. “Examining Participation and Human Well-being Outcomes of Payments for Hydrological Services Programs in Mexico.” Ecolystem Services Vol. 35: 32-42.