provost emerita & founder (asu)

Elizabeth D. Phillips, PhD
Arizona State University
Professor Emerita of Psychology

Elizabeth D. Phillips is a Professor Emerita of Psychology in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. From 2006 to 2013 she served as University Provost and Executive Vice President. In this role she provided leadership to all of the Arizona State University’s campuses and academic programs, fostering excellence in teaching research and service to the community. She guided the university's mission in providing educational excellence and access, and directed the university's efforts in strategic redesign of its academic mission to achieve the vision of The New American University.


Prior to her arrival at ASU, Dr. Phillips served as the Vice Chancellor and Chief of Staff of The State University of New York. Her responsibilities included strategic planning, coordination of the activities of the vice chancellors to build quality in the 64 campuses of the State University of New York, and service as the main liaison between system administration and the campuses. Dr. Phillips served as Provost and Professor of Psychology at the University at Buffalo SUNY prior to moving to Albany. During her tenure, the Office of Science Technology Transfer and Economic Outreach was created at UB and sponsored research at UB increased substantially. Of particular note was her work in obtaining $61 million in state funds, $20 million in federal funds, and over $150 million in corporate and foundation support for a center of excellence in bioinformatics. Dr. Phillips came to the University at Buffalo SUNY from the University of Florida where she served as Provost and Professor of Psychology. At Florida she also played a key role in improving sponsored research and technology transfer and was instrumental in a new student advising system which has been responsible for dramatic improvements in graduation rates at the University of Florida.


Born in New York City, she received her bachelor's degree from the University of Rochester in 1965 and her Ph.D. degree in experimental psychology from the University of Texas at Austin in 1969. She has contributed over 65 chapters and articles to the scientific literature, co-authored three editions of an introductory psychology textbook, and edited two books on the psychology of eating.