Researching sustainable consumption

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Mark Harvey's slides from a CRESI seminar on the ESRC’s new Sustainable Practices Research Group http://cresi.wordpress.com/2011/01/27/seminar-sustainable-practices/

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Researching sustainable consumption

  1. 1. Researching Sustainable Consumption Mark Harvey Ben Anderson February 10 2011
  2. 2. Beyond ABC 2 <ul><li>Attitudes – Behaviour - Choice </li></ul><ul><li> - Context </li></ul><ul><li>The Value-Action Gap </li></ul><ul><li>Consumption as an individual responsibility </li></ul><ul><li>The technology gap </li></ul><ul><li>The incentives gap </li></ul><ul><li>The moral gap </li></ul><ul><li>The capitalist economy gap </li></ul>
  3. 3. Prosperity without growth <ul><li>“ A powerful arena for personal responses …” </li></ul><ul><li>“ The advantages of simplicity – de-cluttering our lives and focusing on essentials” </li></ul><ul><li>“ The possibilities for a voluntary simplicity… people engaged in attempts to live more frugally seem happier than those driven by materialism.” </li></ul><ul><li>“ The end of capitalism?...The potential for personal – or community based – action is clear.” </li></ul><ul><li>Tim Jackson </li></ul>
  4. 4. Practices and institutions <ul><li>Multi-level approach: micro-, meso-, macro. </li></ul><ul><li>Transition theory and socio-technical change </li></ul><ul><li>Social practices versus individual behaviours </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Washing, eating, clothing, heating…… </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Emergent from below, shaping from above </li></ul><ul><li>Does practice theory ignore the economy? </li></ul><ul><li>Where do politics come in? </li></ul>
  5. 5. Changing eating habits – an international comparison. Alan Warde (Manchester). A study of changing diets in France and the UK. How do cultural and institutional differences shape experiences of transition?   Consumers, markets and institutions – the case of bottled water. Mark Harvey (Essex) . A study of bottled water in France, Germany, Italy, the UK, Mexico and India. How do systems of provision, regulation, marketing and consumption intersect?  
  6. 6. Keeping cool: expectations and infrastructures. Elizabeth Shove, Gordon Walker, Sam Brown (Lancaster). A study of how air-conditioning is taking hold in different sites and spaces in the UK. How are technologies and conventions co-evolving and with what consequence for energy demand?   Patterns of water: difference and change in domestic consumption . Ben Anderson (Essex), Will Medd (Lancaster). A study of households and their water consuming practices. Can methods of micro-simulation and interviewing be used to reveal patterns of difference and change in domestic water consumption?   Zero carbon habitation – the design of ways of living. Simon Guy (Manchester), Gordon Walker (Lancaster), Andy Karvonen (Manchester). A study of practices and ways of living inscribed in the design of zero carbon homes. How are zero carbon homes being conceived and with what assumptions and expectations about the everyday lives of their inhabitants?  
  7. 7. Why bottled water? <ul><li>Rapid change in consumer habits, related to nexus of different practices, new markets. </li></ul><ul><li>More natural, less ecological </li></ul><ul><li>Economic organisation of water supply: non-market privatised public versus private market </li></ul><ul><li>What does the drinking bottled water practice articulate with: other practices, institutions. </li></ul><ul><li>Quality of water, ‘qualification of water’: productive process, regulation and branding. </li></ul><ul><li>Comparative project: UK, France, Germany, Italy, Delhi and Mexico City. </li></ul>
  8. 9. The case of bottled water
  9. 10. UK bottled water
  10. 11. Africa drinks too – Spring Water from Wales?
  11. 12. Bottled water in Delhi <ul><li>Over 4 million in Jhugi Jhopdi and slum settlements without water supply (25% of population). </li></ul><ul><li>Households connected to pipe water with unreliably hygienic water </li></ul><ul><li>Private and public water tankers – recent privatisation of some public supply </li></ul><ul><li>Public and private bottled water provision </li></ul><ul><li>Large and growing bottled water market, with Indian and US large enterprises </li></ul>
  12. 13. Bottled water in Delhi
  13. 14. Public bottled water competition 20 Litre bottled 25 rupees Deposit 160 rupees Processed Ganga water
  14. 15. Water tankers - Delhi

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