Luis E. Hestres

Assistant Professor of Communication, University of Texas at San Antonio

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About Luis

Hestres's research focuses on the intersection of technology, political communication and mobilization, Internet freedom, and social change. Topics he has researched include: how different types of advocacy organizations use the Internet to communicate with their supporters and mobilize them; how the policies and technical features that information intermediaries such as Facebook and Twitter implement affect freedom of expression online and the work of advocacy organizations; and the different ways that advocacy organizations communicate online with their supporters about climate change. Before pursuing his doctorate, Hestres worked as an online organizer at various nonprofits, and was most recently the Internet and Communications Director at the 1Sky climate campaign, which merged with 350.org in 2011.


Climate Change Activism in the Age of Donald Trump

In the News

Opinion: "All The Battles Being Waged Against Fossil Fuel Infrastructure are Following a Single Strategy," Luis E. Hestres, The Conversation, August 8, 2018.
Opinion: "What does Trump’s Election Mean for Digital Freedom of Speech?," Luis E. Hestres, The Conversation, January 15, 2017.
Guest on KSAT ABC 12, November 25, 2016.
Quoted by Simon Pollock in "Social Media Echo Chambers are Hurting Climate Debate," Climate Home, August 22, 2016.
Opinion: "The Activists' Playbook behind Obama’s Keystone Rejection," Luis E. Hestres, The Conversation, November 6, 2015.
Opinion: "Is it Time for a Digital Politics Code of Ethics?," Luis E. Hestres, epolitics.com, October 29, 2015.
Quoted by Manon Verchot in "Pros and Cons about Climate Change Don't Often Get Tested on Twitter," ClimateWire, April 20, 2015.
Opinion: "With U.S.-Cuba Ties Warming, What to do about Puerto Rico?," Luis E. Hestres, Houston Chronicle, January 25, 2015.


"Environmental Advocacy at the Dawn of the Trump Era" (with Matthew Nisbet), in Environmental Policy: New Directions for the 21st Century, edited by Norman Vig and Michael Kraft (CQ Press, 2018).

Provides an overview of environmental advocacy activity in the last few years of the Obama administration and activists’ reaction to the Trump presidency.

"Fossil Fuel Divestment and Climate Change Communication" (with Jill Hopke), in Oxford Encyclopedia of Climate Change Communication, edited by Matthew Nisbet.

Provides an overview of the fossil fuel divestment movement, including its intellectual and activist history, and well as arguments for and against the tactic.

"Tools Beyond Control: Social Media and the Work of Advocacy Organizations" Social Media + Society 3, no. 2 (2017): 1-11.

Shows how the policies and features deployed by social media services such as Twitter and Facebook can affect the work of digital strategists at advocacy organizations.

"Climate Change Advocacy Online: Theories of Change, Target Audiences, and Online Strategy" Environmental Politics 24, no. 2 (2015): 193-211.

Compares and contrasts the communication and mobilization strategies of new climate change advocacy groups and their legacy environmental counterparts.

"Preaching to the Choir: Internet-Mediated Advocacy, Issue Public Mobilization, and Climate Change" New Media & Society 16, no. 2 (2014): 323-339.

Analyzes the communication and mobilization strategies of two climate change advocacy groups and the strategic assumptions behind these choices.

"App Neutrality: Apple’s App Store and Freedom of Expression Online" International Journal of Communication 7 (2013): 193-211.

Reviews the Apple App Store’s developer guidelines and approval process and analyzes their impact on freedom of expression online.