Gund Fellow, Associate Professor, Rubenstein School of Environment and Natural Resources

Rachelle Gould is an Associate Professor in the Rubenstein School of Environment and Natural Resources. Her work addresses two primary topics: the nonmaterial benefits that nature provides to people, and environmental education. Issues of equity, justice, and connecting with communities are central to her research.

In Dr. Gould’s nonmaterial benefits work, she studies Cultural Ecosystem Services and relational values. This research addresses the complexities of human-nature relationships, including phenomena such as ecosystem-based recreation, spiritual connections with ecosystems, and cultural heritage associated with ecosystems. In her environmental education work, her current focus is on how learning, values, and behavior interact.

Dr. Gould’s current research projects include (but are not limited to): collaborative research with a Oaxacan Indigenous community on values and value transmission; understanding how Cultural Ecosystem Services connect to decision-making (with PhD Candidate Josh Morse); exploring how coral reef degradation affects the nonmaterial benefits that people of different backgrounds receive from those reefs (with PhD Candidate Alison Adams); in-depth analysis of the social impacts of and responses to Harmful Algal Blooms in St. Albans, Vermont (with PhD Candidate Diana Hackenburg); and understanding how different demographics’ explanations of climate change connects to different values.



  • Gould, R.K., Shrum, T. People who have experienced extreme weather event events are willing to pay more for climate mitigation policy. 2024. Global Environmental Change.
  • Gould, R.K., Himes, A., Anderson, L., Arias-Arevalo, P., Chapman, M., Lenzi, D., Muraca, B., Tadaki, M. 2024. Relational values as a response to critiques of market-based environmental valuation. Environmental Values.
  • Gould, R.K., Moreno Soares, T. (Grad-o), Arias-Arévalo, P., Cantú-Fernandez, M., Baker, D., Eyster, H., Kwon, R., Prox, L., Rode, J., Suarez, A., Vatn., A., Zúñiga-Barragán, J. 2023. The role of value(s) in theories of human behavior. Current Opinion in Environmental Sustainability.
  • Gould, R.K., Gonzalez, M.N. 2023. Research Note: Using science fiction and design thinking in workshops to share research results with low-income, under-represented community members. Science Communication.
  • Gould, R.K., Saito, T., Allen, K., Bonn, A., Chapman, M., Droz, L., Herrmann, T., Himes, A., Ishihara, Coelho-Junior, M., Fukamachi, K., Kenter, J., Muraca, B., Ortiz-Przychodzka, S., Pearson, J., Rono, B.J., Tadaki, M., Tamura, N. 2023. Constraint breeds creativity: A brainstorming method to jumpstart out-of-the-box thinking for sustainability science. Bioscience.
  • Pascual, U., … Gould, R.K., …[100+ authors]. Nature 620, 813–823. [Paper that summarizes the IPBES Values Assessment]
  • Pratson, D.F., Adams, N., Gould, R.K., 2023. Relational values of nature in empirical research: A systematic review. People and Nature.

Associations and Affiliations

  • People and Nature Associate Editor
  • IPBES Values Assessment Lead Author

Areas of Expertise and/or Research

Cultural ecosystem services, environmental education, environmental values, environmental behavior, justice, equity


  • PhD, Environment and Resources, Stanford University
  • MS, Forest Service, Land Conservation, Yale School of Forestry and Environmental Studies
  • BA, Environmental Science and Public Policy, Harvard College