Student Profile

Chris Jadallah

PhD Candidate, Science and Agricultural Education


PhD in Science and Agricultural Education, In progress
School of Education
University of California, Davis

B.S. in Conservation and Resource Studies, 2016
College of Natural Resources
University of California, Berkeley


My research examines what and how people learn through participation in community-based, place-based scientific research and monitoring projects. Specifically, I study the individual and collective learning processes that occur through these projects as they relate to the conservation and stewardship of diverse social-ecological systems. I pay particular attention to the cultural, relational, affective, and embodied dimensions of learning across settings, with a special interest in how uneven power relations between professional scientists and broader publics – particularly young people – can afford or constrain opportunities for public participation and engagement. 

I bring an interdisciplinary lens to this work, drawing from fields such as the learning sciences, science education, science and technology studies, and natural resource sociology to better understand how these sorts of community-based environmental projects may:

1. Create and deepen opportunities for individuals and communities to contribute their knowledge, values, and perspectives in shaping scientific and conservation endeavors. 

2. Provide learners with opportunities to pursue their own interest-driven and personally meaningful environmental inquiries in which they both deepen their individual expertise and contribute said expertise to social-ecological stewardship as part of consequential, collective activities. 

This work is informed by ethnographic and interactional methods in addition to critical and sociocultural perspectives on learning. Central to my research is a commitment to community-based, engaged scholarship. This entails building close partnerships with communities to simultaneously co-design, organize, and study initiatives that bring together diverse actors to address real-world environmental problems. Ultimately, I am interested in uncovering strategies for designing these types of learning environments so that they can better leverage multiple ways of knowing in service of healthy and just social and ecological futures. 

While my previous research has investigated native bee conservation and diversified farming systems, my current work with The Center for Community and Citizen Science is situated within the context of community-based monitoring, dam removal, and watershed restoration at multiple sites in the Western United States. 

Interests: citizen science, community science, science and environmental education, learning, place, biodiversity conservation, social-ecological systems, stewardship, engaged scholarship 


National Science Foundation Graduate Research Fellow 2018-2023 


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