Kristen Averyt

Research Professor, Office of the Executive Vice President and Provost
Expertise: Climate Resilience, Sustainability, Urban Resilience


Kristen Averyt is a Research Professor at UNLV focusing on climate resilience and urban sustainability. Prior to joining UNLV, Averyt served as president of the Desert Research Institute.

Averyt has a long record working on different facets of the climate issue, particularly connecting science with public policy and decision making. She served as a lead author on the 2014 US National Climate Assessment, and she was one of many scientists who shared in the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize awarded to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. 

In recent years, Averyt’s work has focused on the energy-water nexus, climate and western water issues including the Colorado River, and most recently, urban resilience and sustainability. In 2018 she was named one of Northern Nevada Business Weekly’s Top 10 Innovators of the Year and a Top 10 Woman of Exemplary Achievement. 

Averyt is currently a Senior Policy Fellow of the American Meteorological Society, and engages in several other service activities, including as a member of the University Corporation for Atmospheric Research (UCAR) Advocacy for the Science Community Board and as an appointee to the Governor’s STEM Advisory Board. 


  • Ph.D., Geological & Environmental Sciences, Stanford University
  • M.Sc, Chemistry, University of Otago
  • B.S., University of Miami

Kristen Averyt In The News

Public News Service
December 10, 2019
Reno and Las Vegas are the fastest-warming cities in the nation, according to a new report. Researchers at Climate Central found Reno is an average of 6.2 degrees warmer in this decade than it was in the 1970s, and Las Vegas is 4.6 degrees warmer.
September 19, 2019
Nevadans north and south are starting to feel the effects of climate change. It’s the heat—In Las Vegas, August set a record for consecutive days over 105… it’s heat-related deaths, which jumped 500 percent in Clark County between 2014 and 2017.

Articles Featuring Kristen Averyt

UNLV professor Matthew Lachniet works in his lab on campus.
PeopleDecember 27, 2019
A collection of stories highlighting UNLV faculty and students who made the news in 2019.
People preparing to cut ribbon on new Fertitta Complex
Campus NewsNovember 1, 2019
A collection of local, national, and international news stories highlighting the people and programs of UNLV.