Sustainable Consumption Institute

Consumption is a hugely powerful force.

The sustainability challenges we face stem largely from an explosion in consumption, and the corresponding exploitation of finite resources. To successfully respond to these challenges, we must now radically reduce the resource intensity of everyday lives.

This may mean consuming less, or it could mean consuming differently. Either approach requires big leaps in our understanding and our actions – not simply how we produce and distribute goods and services, but how we organise our societies, government policy, and our lives.
Our mission at the Sustainable Consumption Institute is to bring insight and clarity to a key part of the sustainability challenge: the role of consumption.

We take original insights from the Social Sciences, insights that often challenge orthodox thinking, and subject them to critical empirical scrutiny. This, we believe, is essential for advancing fundamental understandings about processes of consumption and social change.
Our approach to research is one that develops novel methodologies for addressing key research questions, including the use of a wide range of data and comparative methodologies that recognise sustainable consumption is an international challenge.

Through an ambitious research programme we tackle head-on the scale and urgency of societal responses required to address sustainability – responses that require collaboration between a wide-range of stakeholders, including businesses and policy-makers, who can both benefit from and contribute to our research.

Welcome to the SCI.

    - Professor Dale Southerton, Director SCI

SCI Newsletter

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26 February 2015

Distributing Power Report

‘Distributing Power’ report published today by the EPSRC-funded Realising Transition Pathways (RTP) project. The report, co-authored by Victoria Johnson, asks: Can the UK transition to a 50% distributed, low carbon electricity system? Read Victoria’s blog on the report here.

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4 February 2015

SCI & Gastronomica Seminar - Dr Charlotte Biltekoff

The Sustainable Consumption Institute is pleased to host a seminar in conjunction with Gastronomica: The Journal of Critical Food Studies by Dr Charlotte Biltekoff, for further details please click here

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2 February 2015

Lectureship in the Sociology of Consumption

The University of Manchester is currently advertising for a permanent Lectureship in the Sociology of Consumption.  The post will be connected with the SCI and we seek candidates with expertise in the study of consumption with either a track-record or genuine potential to contribute to the field of sustainable consumption.

The post can be viewed here

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  • ManchesterSCI
    Viki Johnson’s blog ‘Distributing power: Can the UK transition to a 50% distributed, low carbon electricity system?’ 9 hours 18 min ago
  • ManchesterSCI
    Viki Johnson @victoria_plumb speaking at Powering Up North - Changing our communities' energy future today 13 hours 43 min ago
  • ManchesterSCI
    Luke Yates’s latest paper on everyday politics, social practices and movement networks available here 3 days 11 hours ago

Our research

Understanding consumer choices, habits and routines and how they can become more sustainable

Accelerating sustainable innovation in products, services and systems

Exploring alternative framings of sustainable consumption and the politics underpinning them

Developing novel methodologies to advance the evidence base on sustainable consumption