Elizabeth Bittel

About Me


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"Bittel" rhymes with "little"

Please email me To inquire about speaking engagements, teaching materials, and photo exhibitions.

Find me on Twitter @elizabethbittel

Contact: elizabethBITTEL(at)GMAIL(DOT)com

I am an Assistant Professor of Sociology in the Sociology/Anthropology Department at SUNY Cortland (State University of New York College).

In 2019, I earned my Ph.D. in Sociology at the University of Colorado Boulder where I received focused training in Environmental Sociology, and worked as a Graduate Research Assistant and the Internship Coordinator at the Natural Hazards Center at the Institute of Behavioral Science.

My dissertation and ongoing research focuses on long-term recovery from the 2004 Indian Ocean Tsunami and Civil War (1983 - 2009) in communities in Batticaloa, Sri Lanka.

Areas of expertise: 

  • Sociology of Environment

  • Social Dimensions of Disasters and Hazards

  • Environmental Justice

  • Humanitarian Response and International ‘Development’

  • Ethnographic Methods

  • Sri Lanka and Tamil Culture

I was born in Key West, raised in South Florida, and earned my undergraduate degree at the University of North Florida in Jacksonville. 

I have been raised and mentored by teachers who have instilled in me the value of an ecological mindset and trained me to be a sociologist and educator who is deeply committed to sharing and interrogating this perspective with students.

I believe that educators and students of social science and environment are among the most well-poised to be successful mobilizers towards a more ecological society. 

Recent Updates & Upcoming Events

  • Recipient of Ralph and Barbara Dakin Award for outstanding scholarship that contributes to peace, inter-cultural understanding, resolution conflict, and/or amelioration of important social problems. Department of Sociology, University of Colorado Boulder.

  • On Temple Adornment: Grief and Pain, Intimacy and Solidarity in Tattoo Ritual” photo exhibition to be on permanent display at the Firestone Library at Princeton University. (May 2019 - onward)