Chris Doran was born and raised in the San Francisco Bay Area in California. He went on to Seaver College at Pepperdine University to study biology. After receiving a bachelor's degree in biology and then a Master of Divinity from Pepperdine, he went off to Berkeley to study the intersection of theology and science. He returned to his alma mater in 2007 as a faculty member in the Religion & Philosophy Division. After acknowledging that climate change is the most significant issue facing the future of human civilization, he created the Sustainability Minor in 2016. The Sustainability Minor is the largest multidisciplinary program in the history of Seaver College.
His most recent book is Hope in the Age of Climate Change: Creation Care this Side of the Resurrection, which looks to understand how the resurrection of Jesus should inspire us to be leaders rather than followers in solutions to climate change and other sustainability challenges. His current research project seeks to articulate a Christian theological response to both human and nonhuman migration and displacement due to the climate crisis.
Doran has spent considerable time in New Zealand in the past few years, which led him to create the sustainability study abroad program in Kaikoura. He took Seaver students to the South Island in 2018 and 2019. He has summited Mt. Fyffe three times, including once in the snow and believes that the bluff overlooking Point Kean is one of the most beautiful spots in the world. He is an avid runner, having completing 5 marathons and numerous half-marathons. As a certified scuba diver, he spends as much time underwater as he is able.
Finally, Doran has been a friend, supporter, mentor, minister, and advocate for many of his LGBTQ+ students over the years. He has led numerous club convos on LGBTQ+ topics from a Christian perspective, gave the first 3-day lecture on LGBTQ+ concerns in the history of the Pepperdine Bible Lectures, works regularly with Centerpeace, and has given advice to numerous churches on LGBTQ+ matters.
- PhD, Systematic & Philosophical Theology, Graduate Theological Union, 2007
- MDiv, Pepperdine University, 2002
- BA, Biology, Pepperdine University, 1998
- Chris Doran, Hope in the Age of Climate Change: Creation Care this Side of the Resurrection (Portland, OR: Cascade Books, May 2017).
Peer-Reviewed Journal Articles
- Chris Doran, "Human Population, Noah's Ark & Climate Change: Christian Thoughts for the Anthropocene Era," Journal of Academic Perspectives, vol. 2017, no 2.
- Chris Doran, "Eating as a Christian Act of Hope," Interdisciplinary Environmental Review, vol. 16, nos. 2/3/4 (2016): 193–205.
- Chris Doran, "Environmental Curses and Blessings through the Eyes of the Biblical Prophets," Worldviews 15 (2011): 291-301.
- Chris Doran, "Intelligent Design: It's Just Too Good to be True," Theology & Science, vol. 8, no. 2 (May 2010): 223-37.
- Chris Doran, "From Atheism to Theodicy to Intelligent Design: Responding to the Work of Francisco J. Ayala," Theology & Science, vol. 7, no. 4 (November 2009): 337-44.
Peer-Reviewed Book Chapters
- Chris Doran, "Creation Care this Side of the Resurrection," in The Greening of Religion: Hope in the Eye of the Storm, (Cherry Hill Seminary, 2017).
- Chris Doran, "The Strange Story About Evolution and America," in Science and Religion: One World, Many Possibilities (Routledge, 2014).
- Chris Doran, "What Would Leopold Think About Christianity Today?" in Rethinking Leopold's Land Ethic: Emerging Cultures of Sustainability, selected for publication.
- Chris Doran, "A Christian Contribution to Sustainability," Teaching Sustainability and Teaching Sustainably (Stylus Publishing, December 2011).
- Chris Doran, "Christian Responses to Evolution," The Routledge Companion to Religion and Science (Routledge, October 2011).
Other Published Works
- Chris Doran & Emily Tanaka, "Climate Change & "the Least of These" in As You Did for 'the Least of These': Christian Responses to Social Inequalities, accepted for publication.
- Chris Doran, ed., Leaven, vol. 21, no. 3 (2013).
- Chris Doran, ed., Leaven, vol. 17, no. 2 (2009).
- Chris Doran, "Intelligent Design: Is It Really Worth It," Leaven, vol. 17, no. 2 (Second Quarter 2009): 78-82.
- Chris Doran, "Resource Guide," Leaven, vol. 17, no. 2 (Second Quarter 2009): 98-100.
- National Endowment of the Humanities Summer Scholar
- CDIUR Grant
- AYURI Grant
- Summer Undergraduate Research Program
- International Society for the Study of Religion, Nature & Culture
- Center for Theology and the Natural Sciences
- American Academy of Religion
- "A Protestant Christian Response to Climate Refugees," at Baylor Symposium on Faith and Culture: Stewardship of Creation, Baylor University, Waco, Texas (October 24–26, 2018)
- "Population Control & Climate Change: Is the Noah's Ark Narrative a Helpful Way Forward?" at Faith Communities and Environmental Activism, Edinburgh, Scotland (May 18–20, 2017)
- "Is Population Control a Necessary Component to a Christian Discussion about Climate Change?" at Oxford Symposium on Religious Studies, Oxford, England (December 5–7, 2016)
- "How Might Christians Discuss Population Control in the Age of Climate Change?" Just Sustainability: Hope for the Commons, Seattle University, Seattle, WA (August 7–10, 2016)
- "Creation Care this Side of the Resurrection," at The Greening of Religion: Hope in the Eye of the Storm, Columbia, SC (April 1–3, 2016)
- "Eating as a Christian Act of Hope" at Just Sustainability: Hope for the Commons, Seattle University, Seattle, WA (August 7–9, 2014)
- With Brian Newman & Ed Larson "God and Global Warming: Religion and Environmental Politics in the U.S. House of Representatives" at Annual Meeting of the Midwest Political Science Association, Chicago, IL (April 12–15, 2012)
- "Living on the Edge by Being Frugal" at Living on the Edge, 4th International Conference of the International Society for the Study of Religion, Nature and Culture, Perth, Australia (December 16–19, 2010)
- "Frugality: The Missing Link in the Discussion about Sustainability" at Campus Initiatives to Catalyze a Just and Sustainable World, Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education, Denver, CO (October 10–13, 2010)
- "Sustainability in Christian Higher Education: A Look at Pepperdine University" at Campus Initiatives to Catalyze a Just and Sustainable World, Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education, Denver, CO (October 10–13, 2010)
- "Sustainability & Pepperdine University: A Contradiction in Terms?" at Working Together for Sustainability: On Campus and Beyond, Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education, Raleigh, NC (November 10–12, 2008)
- "And God said, 'Let There Be Specified Complexity': A Critical Appraisal of Intelligent Design" at God, Nature, and Design: Historical and Contemporary Perspectives, Oxford University (July 10–13, 2008)
- Christian Colleges' Powerful Take on Sustainability, Chronicle.com
Areas of Expertise
- Theology and science
- Christianity and sustainability
- Christian ethics
- Christian Responses to Climate Change
- Climate Migration & Climate Justice
- Theology of Food & Food Justice
- LGBTQ+ Ministry
- REL 301: Christianity & Sustainability
- Christian Ethics
- Hope in the Age of Climate Change (First-Year Seminar)
- Sustainability Colloquium