Robert Futrell

Professor of Sociology
Expertise: Social Movements, Political Extremism, Environmental Sociology, Urban Sustainability


Robert Futrell specializes in social movements and social change, environmental sociology, urban sustainability, and science and technology. His environmental scholarship focuses on sustainability, climate change, and urban life in the United States' desert Southwest. His current social movement scholarship focuses on the cultural and organizational dynamics of social movement persistence and political extremism.

His co-authored book, American Swastika: Inside the White Power Movement's Hidden Spaces of Hate (2015, Rowman & Littlefield) explains white supremacy in the U.S. He is also a co-author of Out of Hiding: Extremist White Supremacy and How It Can Be Stopped (2024, Routledge), which explains how white supremacist extremism endures, the varied forms it takes, its relationship with systemic racism, and what to do about it.

Futrell's research has been published in outlets such as Social ProblemsSociological QuarterlyJournal of Environmental Planning and ManagementScience, Technology, & Human Values, and the Journal of Contemporary Ethnography, among others.



  • Ph.D., Sociology, University of Kansas

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Robert Futrell In The News

Associated Press
Amid threats to elections officials, disinformation about the security of U.S. voting systems and ongoing fallout from the Jan. 6 insurrection, scientists who study social movements have a lot to teach us about how we got here.
Desert Companion
Lin ‘Spit’ Newborn and Daniel Shersty were murdered 25 years ago. Their legacies still reverberate through Las Vegas
San Francisco Standard
As Americans celebrated Christmas, it was Easter for Dr. Robert Honeyman: They had been resurrected. “Have a great Christmas and wear a mask!” they declared defiantly, after their Twitter account was reinstated.
The Wire
You can inoculate people against fake news by exposing them to small amounts of such content – much as low doses of live virus can vaccinate people against a disease.

Articles Featuring Robert Futrell

a UNLV football helmet placed on the turf with an Allegiant Stadium sign and empty bleachers visible in the background
Campus News | January 31, 2024

As the nation's most-watched sports entertainment event rolls into town, UNLV researchers are available to provide expertise.

Lake Mead
Campus News | July 11, 2022

A collection of news stories highlighting UNLV experts who made headlines locally, nationally, and around the world.

Kirk Kerkorian School of Medicine graduates line up to cross the commencement stage
Campus News | December 30, 2021

A collection of 2021 headlines highlighting medical school milestones, a steady stronghold on diversity and research rankings, student success, and media mentions featuring faculty experts.

Student playing Jenga
Campus News | September 7, 2021

A collection of news stories highlighting community and perseverance at UNLV.