Geographies of Sustainable Lifestyles
Session Organisers: Stewart Barr (University of Exeter) and Frances Fahy (University of Ulster). Sponsored by the Environmental Perception and Behavioural Geography Specialty Group of the AAG
The start of the 21st century has been characterised by urgent calls to examine the role of consumption in driving global environmental change and framing responses to these ecological dilemmas. Indeed, the ways in which consumption has been constituted and influenced by environmental, technological, economic, social and political processes have become critical issues for geographers. The convergence of these two research agendas has therefore provided geographers and other social science researchers with a range of opportunities to explore the emerging contexts for ‘sustainable lifestyles’ and the growing political importance of behaviour change. These have been undertaken at a range of scales (from individuals and households, to organisations and institutions) and have examined numerous environmentally-related practices that encompass consumptive, habitual and ‘post-consumption’ behaviours. Indeed, research in this field is characterised by a range of theoretical and applied approaches. Accordingly, this session aims to bring together geographers and other social scientists who are engaged in research on sustainable consumption, lifestyles and behaviour change. The session will provide an opportunity to explore the range of approaches towards sustainable consumption and will enable delegates to share theoretical and practical experiences from their research. We welcome contributions from researchers who are exploring this wide field, including those working on issues such as energy conservation, water resources, waste management, travel and transport, leisure and tourism and the broader field of ethical and green consumption. Contributions are welcome from those working at different scales (e.g. individual, household, organisational) and in a range of contexts (socio-economic, cultural, environmental).