January 2021 Newsletter
New Years Greetings to SCORAI Members Around the World

We hope that this month's newsletter finds you well. We're looking forward to a year ahead of continuing and deepening discussions about sustainable consumption-- addressing personal behavior, pathways for political change and potentials for systems transformation.

We're very pleased to share that the SCORAI webinar series will continue into 2021. Register for webinars with Josh Alpert of C40 Cities on "Sustainable Consumption and Climate Leadership for Cities" January 26 and Halina Brown speaking about "Multi-Stakeholder Collaboration Toward Climate Action" on February 23. You can view recent webinars with Giorgos Kallis, Jennie Stephens, Ashley Colby and Gene Homicki here.
--Halina and Liz
SCORAI Webinar Series:
 Sustainable Consumption and Lifestyles

January 26, 2021, 10-11am ET

Josh Alpert: "Sustainable Consumption and Climate Leadership for Cities"

Josh Alpert, Director of Special Projects with C40 Cities, will be leading a webinar to discuss the latest climate activity within leading cities around the world.  Included will be a discussion on C40’s Thriving Cities Initiative- a programme designed to help cities stay within both their climate and social limits by using famed economist Kate Raworth’s Doughnut Economics.

Josh Alpert began work with C40, a network of the worlds megacities committed to addressing climate change, in August, 2016. As Director of Special Projects, he has worked on the creation of an air quality programme, an inclusive climate action programme, a US-specific strategy for moving forward on climate actions in a new context, and a host of other projects. Most recently, Josh has been working on creating C40’s new Consumption Programme, starting with the groundbreaking Thriving Cities Initiative. Josh also is serving as C40’s Head of the Bloomberg Philanthropies American Cities Climate Challenge, as well as acting as C40’s Director of North America. Previously, Josh has served as C40’s liaison to Bloomberg Philanthropies.

Upcoming Webinars in the Series:
  • February 23, 10-11am ET: Halina Brown: "Multi-Stakeholder Collaboration Toward Climate Action"
  • March 22, 10-11am ET: Duncan Crowley: Talk information coming soon
  • April 19, 10-11am ET: Lucie Middlemiss: "Energy poverty in the energy transition: understanding and addressing the under consumption of energy during a low-carbon transition in Europe"
Watch recent webinars at 
Sustainable Consumption in the News
Green growth vs degrowth: are we missing the point? It’s time to stop talking past each other and unite against the real enemies of environmental justice
Open Democracy | by Beth Stratford | December 4, 2020
Author Beth Stratford argues that there are more issues that unite green growth and degrowth advocates than divide them, and says that there is no time to waste in building a broader based coalition to address the climate crisis, writing: "There is nothing natural or inevitable about this reality. Land, water, raw materials, and energy resources are gifts from nature — common resources that still account for more than half of our national wealth. In an ideal world, the rents arising from control of these common assets would be captured and invested in collective services and a strong social safety net, to ensure that nobody goes short on life’s essentials."

It’s Not That Hard to Buy Nothing. Some people re-evaluated their relationship to things in 2020
The New York Times | by Britany Robinson | December 28, 2020
This lifestyle article profiles individuals who are making choices to consume more intentionally and more sustainably. Liz Chai, a Portland Oregon resident profiled in the article, "sees resource-sharing as something that can be built into communities wherever people are." The reporter briefly discusses the impact of the  Covid-19 shutdowns on total consumer spending and online shopping. 

What Is the Environmental Cost of Fast Shipping?
UC Davis Magazine | by Amy Quinton | January 4, 2021
Miguel Jaller, co-director of the Sustainable Freight Research Center at UC Davis’ Institute of Transportation Studies, researches the movement of goods and measures its environmental impact. Jaller says that shoppers should be educated to be more rational about their purchases online and avoid impulse buying, but will online retailers play this role in educating consumers and incentivizing more sustainable delivery options?
Calls for Contributions/ Submissions
Special Issue on "Behavioral Economics and Sustainable Public Policies"

Special issue in Sustainability
Deadline for manuscript submissions: 1 May 2021

The world is facing major issues to ensure the future of our environment, and humans are as much part of the problem as they need to be part of the solutions. Acknowledging people as part of the ecosystem, public policies need to be grounded on empirical evidence about how people actually behave in order to be able to present more sustainable solutions and interventions. Human environments are not simple predictable rational machines, but rather systems usually characterized by high levels of uncertainty and change. In fact, behavioral economics, as an area of research that tests the classic rational assumption by identifying consistent behavioral patterns, has continuously shown how humans systematically violate these classical assumptions. Understandably, research in behavioral economics and sustainable public policies has gained more and more attention over the last few years, identifying concrete implications to policy design. In this Special Issue, we encourage authors to submit reviews, meta-analyses, conceptual models, and empirical studies aiming to present recent advances in this emerging field, namely by identifying how responses and attitudes toward specific environmental policies differ from those predicted by standard theory.

Dr. Ana Rita Farias
Dr. Joana Reis
Guest Editors
Call for Papers and Panels on “Political Economy of Sustainable Energy: Power, Institutions and Change” ECPR General Conference, 31 August – 3 September 2021, University of Innsbruck

Deadline for submissions: February 10th, 2020.

The Section on “Political Economy of Sustainable Energy: Power, Institutions and Change” (S46) will take stock of the evolving political economy of sustainable energy and its broader implications for the IPE of energy. In particular, the section seeks to engage with questions of power, institutions and processes of change. We seek papers and/or panels that address these themes at different levels of governance. Additional details on the themes of the section are provided below.

Please submit your paper or panel via the ECPR online system [S46: Political Economy of Sustainable Energy: Power, Institutions and Change] by the official deadline of February 10th, 2020.

Shifting Power Relations
A wide variety of conceptual approaches to power can be taken to explore how key actors are engaging in struggles to (re)shape energy landscapes at different levels of governance (Burke & Stephens 2018). A key question in this regard is how power relations in energy have started to shift as a result of the energy transition (Avelino & Wittmayer 2015; Brisbois 2020) and the implications this is has for the advancement sustainable energy as well broader developments in the international political economy of energy (Quitzow & Thielges, 2020). Moreover, there is scope to explore what we can learn from over 20 years of exchange between coalitions pursuing sustainability and those seeking to oppose and/or delay change to existing energy systems.

Remaking Institutions
The panels in this thematic area explore how energy institutions are being re-made. They take an institutionalist approach - historical, discursive, ideational - to sustainable energy and seek to better understand the institutional conditions under which sustainable changes have been made (Kern 2011; Kuzemko et al 2016). The aim is to reflect on how new policies, regulations, organisational forms and social practices related to sustainable energy emerged and adapted over time. In addition, it explores how new knowledge has developed and informed the types of changes that took place and how this shaped changing political interests and their articulation (Buschmann & Oels, 2019). This could include analysis of sets of new ideas, knowledge regimes, networks, advocacy coalitions and their means - narratives, discourses, framings, resources - through which they have influenced processes of sustainable change and innovation

Dynamics of Change
The panels on the dynamics of change in sustainable energy will focus on energy transitions, and/or transformations, and the processes through which they are taking shape at different geographic scales. This could include analyses of how to accelerate transitions; the mechanisms of policy change and feedback; the mobilisation and engagement of different actor groups and how this influences the political conditions under which sustainable energy policymaking takes place (Stirling 2014; Roberts et al 2018). These panels will provide a deeper understanding of how timing and sequencing, and the dynamic interplay of policy processes across different policy domains, affect the politics of sustainable energy (Meckling et al., 2017). Moreover, panels might address what different social, economic and political outcomes are emerging as a result of policies designed to enable decarbonisation.

The Conveners: Andreas Goldthau, Caroline Kuzemko (Section Co-Chair), Johan Lilliestam, Lana Ollier, Rainer Quitzow (Section Co-Chair)

Special issue on Biosociality from a consumer culture perspective

Special issue in Sustainability
Deadline for manuscript submissions: 131 October 2021

An acknowledgement of the problematic human role in the contemporary anthropocene era rests on the dethroning of humanity as a species outside and beyond the biological. On a more situated level, an understanding of the bio-social anthropos is a precondition for understanding the modes of human desires, seductions and aberrations. The complexity of life and the complexity of the human condition is the starting point for a consumer research agenda and an approach to consumer culture, that can cope with the obvious global challenges to sustainability we are facing.

As noted by Descola in his book The Ecology of Others, foreshadowed by Guattari in The Three Ecologies, and explored by Harraway in When Species Meet, the relationship between humans and the global biome is paradigmatic of the challenges of, and the challenges imposing themselves on humanity in this century. For Descola, a non-exhaustive list of these challenges would include “climate change, the erosion of biodiversity, the multiplication of transgenic organisms, the exhaustion of fossil fuels, the pollution of fragile environments and of large urban centers, the accelerating disappearance of tropical forests and coral reefs, all have become issues of public debate at the global scale and fuel the disquiet of numerous inhabitants.” In this special issue of Sustainability, we invite reflections on the relationship between consumer culture and biosociality in the face of  these and related challenges.

Biosociality as ontology and epistemology addresses the challenges imposed on the vision of sustainable consumption by the current tendency to reduce the cultural, psychic and biological consequences of consumer culture to predominantly if not exclusive a human affair. Furthermore, it reformulates the enduring attitude-behavior gap between consumers’ oft-stated desire for more sustainable consumption and the reality of their behavior in a new way, as a problem related to the systemic misconstrual of the relationship between human economic behavior and the biome. Finally, a biosocial perspective offers an alternative that recognizes the necessity of resource circulation in any imaginable economic system.

This special issue of Sustainability calls for an exploration of a simultaneous acknowledgement of the sociality of the biological and the biologicality of the social without recourse to flawed, universalizing genetic reductionisms. We invite investigations and conversations addressing the possibility of a biosocial renewal of thought in consumer culture theory and ensuing reflections on a more sustainable consumption system against the ecological precarity which consumer capitalism produces. As indicated, biosocial renewal is defined by the contingent extension of the principle of sociality to other living beings, and the recognition that all living beings are in communicative relations with significant others in their environment and between whom resources circulate in value co-creation processes.

We invite submissions without prejudice with regard to paradigm or method.

Some key terms: biosociality, sustainability, posthumanism, Bio-equity, biosemiotics, neo-animism, desire, energy, ecosystem

Søren Askegaard
Eric Arnould
Dominique Roux
Guest Editors
Special Issue on SUSTAINABLE REDESIGN OF THE GLOBAL FASHION SYSTEM: Exploring the Organizational, Technological, and Socio-cultural Dimensions of Transformation

Special issue in Sustainability: Science, Practice and Policy (SSPP)
Deadline for abstract submissions: 15 January 2021

Global fashion, as part of the cultural and creative industries (CCI), represents a rich and advanced manifestation of contemporary culture and simultaneously embodies a complex and layered set of sociotechnical relationships. On one hand, fashion is a sophisticated expression of society widely perceived as a “cultural medium”, and pervading and informing social practices and dynamics. On the other hand, fashion is one of the oldest manufacturing sectors in Western countries, contributing to globalization processes, producing various deleterious effects through concurrent processes of cultural homogenization and impoverishment, as well as deeply affecting the quality of the environment to the point where today it is the second most polluting industry in the world. 

These two dimensions of fashion are currently colliding. The public has begun to demonstrate heightened awareness and new sensibilities have begun to change customers’ attitudes toward consumption choices, thus increasing the demand for transparency on the part of commercially visible brands. 

The COVID-19 pandemic has quickened ongoing transformation and overturned pre-existing commitments. The global fashion system—comprising both its facets of production and consumption along with its negative social and environmental consequences—is being critically questioned even by authoritative figures at the center of some of the most iconic and successful labels. 

Given these circumstances, this Special Issue strives to take advantage of this momentum and to link several disciplinary domains with the objective of exploring the organizational, technological, and sociocultural dimensions of transformation. 

The Special Issue welcome paper proposals addressing the following topics: 
  1. REDESIGNING THE FASHION SYSTEM, focusing on the organizational dimensions of fashion and its systemic transformation.  
  2. INNOVATING FASHION PRODUCTS AND PROCESSES, focusing on innovation and technological transformation of fashion products and processes.  
  3. RESHAPING FASHION CULTURES focusing on the sociocultural dimension of fashion and its transformation towards sustainability. 
January 15, 2020: Submission of extended abstracts (approximately 750 words)  
February 12, 2021: Notification of invited papers  
April 16, 2021: Submission of full paper drafts (approximately 8.000 words)  
May 21, 2021: Completion of first round of peer review  
June 30, 2021: Submission of revised drafts  
July 15, 2021: Completion of second round of peer review  
September 1, 2021: Submission of final drafts  

Review the full call for submissions here: For all technical and format matters, please refer to the Journal’s website. (

Editors: Dr. Krittinee Nuttavuthisit (Sasin School of Management, Thailand) and Professor John Thøgersen (Aarhus University, Denmark)
Special Issue on Sustainable Consumption in Asia in a Disruptive Era
Special issue in the Journal of Consumer Policy
Deadline for submissions: 31 January 2021

In an era where climate change, pandemics and economic turmoil lead to perennial disruptions in all aspects of our lives, the objective of this special issue is to collect and disseminate high quality, impactful research shedding light on sustainable and unsustainable consumption practices, in particular the transformation from the latter to the former, both in Asia and beyond, and what kinds of policy steps are needed to speed up the transformation.

This special issue focuses on understanding sustainable vs. unsustainable consumption (Thøgersen, 2014) and on opportunities and policy to induce pro-environmental behaviour changes in private households in an economic context characterised by high growth and/or disruption (Prothero et al., 2011; Reisch, Cohen, Thøgersen, & Tukker, 2016). The aim is to provide insights into fostering behaviour change and its implications for e.g., lifestyles, well-being or social norms. For this special issue, we invite papers based on a variety of theoretical and methodological angles and approaches on how to induce and maintain impactful pro-environmental behaviour change (Reisch & Thøgersen, 2015).

Review the full call for submissions here: For all technical and format matters, please refer to the Journal’s website. (

Editors: Dr. Krittinee Nuttavuthisit (Sasin School of Management, Thailand) and Professor John Thøgersen (Aarhus University, Denmark)
Upcoming Events
Listed in chronological order, from coming-soon to farthest out on the horizon.
Research to Action: Science & Solutions for a Planet under Pressure
Co-hosted by the National Council for Science & the Environment (NCSE) and Project Drawdown

5-9 January 2021  | Virtual Conference

We are bringing together leaders, research partners, scientists, decision-makers and friends from across the globe to share their science and solutions to the world's most pressing global challenges. This joint conference will focus on the physical and social realities of climate change and the way this impacts people, ecosystems, markets and the places people live; and how implementing climate solutions produces positive co-benefits to society, the economy, and the planet.

Full details:
RE-SOURCING Opening Conference
18-19 January 2021  | Virtual Conference

With the European Green Deal, the consumption of mineral resources will increase significantly, as they are the material backbone of many green technologies. Microchips contain gold, solar panels contain rare-earth elements, and lithium is a main component of batteries. Often, we do not see the negative social and environmental impacts of sourcing these minerals, as supply chains are complex and spread across continents.

RE-SOURCING ( is a new Horizon 2020 project on Responsible Sourcing. The project aims at building a global stakeholder platform to mitigate social impacts, environmental burden, and business risks at the same time. The project’s vision is to establish responsible sourcing as a common principle among EU and international stakeholders.

The Opening Conference will enable participants to engage in an open and comprehensive dialogue with representatives from all relevant stakeholder groups (industry, policy, CSOs, and research) on the topic of responsible sourcing in global mineral value chains. We will investigate current challenges and opportunities in three industry sectors (renewable energy, mobility & electronics) as well as address the global situation of responsible sourcing and how this affects European companies.

Full details:
6th Network of Early Career Sustainability Transitions (NEST) Conference
8-9 April 2021  | Sofia, Bulgaria

The Network of Early Career Researchers in Sustainability Transitions (NEST) organises every year a conference to allow early career researchers in sustainability transitions to exchange, share their work and broaden their perspectives. The 6th NEST conference team is happy to share its call for abstracts which you can access here : . The conference will be held in Sofia on the 8th and 9th of April. This year's theme focuses on transition pathways.

Abstracts are expected by 15th of December at
Sustainable Consumption and Care
20-21 May 2021  | National University of Ireland, Galway

SCORAI Europe is convening a two-day workshop in Galway, Ireland. The workshop will begin after lunch on the 20th May 2021 and conclude with lunch on 21th May 2021. Participants are invited to submit research and strategy papers that contribute to the following theme and focus areas.

The purpose of the workshop is to delineate and differentiate the interplay between sustainable consumption and care. We are interested in care in the context of sustainable consumption as well as in sustainability in the context of care. The good life and well-being are put centre stage and we are interested in how we can maintain, continue and repair the world in order to life a good life.

Full workshop details and call for papers:
4th PLATE Conference
26-28 May 2021  | Virtual Conference

The 4th Conference on Product Lifetimes and the Environment (PLATE) will now take place as a virtual conference from 26th to 28th May 2021. Using a dedicated digital platform, PLATE 2021 will continue in the tradition of the previous events in creating a multi-disciplinary forum for researchers, practitioners and educators who are passionate in understanding and reacting to the influence of product lifetimes on the environment.
In addition to the presentations by delegates, the virtual format will include live keynote presentations, on-line discussions, video-chats, coffee breaks and networking space and even a social programme. This is a fascinating time to be working on this topic. The European Green Deal is promising to adopt an industrial strategy that will intensify the focus on product lifetimes. The resource-intensive sectors of electronics, textiles, construction and plastics are the subject of particular interest in the pursuit of the circular and carbon neutral economy. Business models based on usage rather than ownership are promised to shift consumption away from short lived products.

Full conference information here:
Sustainability Research & Innovation Congress 2021
12-15 June 2021  | Brisbane, Australia & virtual

The Sustainability Research & Innovation Congress 2021 (SRI2021) is the world’s first transdisciplinary gathering in sustainability – it will be a space of fierce advocacy for sustainability scholarship, innovation, collaboration and action.

This annual event unites global sustainability leaders, experts, industry and innovators to inspire action and promote a sustainability transformation. For the first time, the Congress will launch as a hybrid event with a diverse and innovative online program alongside onsite participation. In addition to the 100+ sessions available throughout the day and night, thanks to the global reach of SRI and partners, the SRI2021 Online Package includes exclusive events and services, starting as soon as February 2021.

SRI is a joint initiative of Future Earth and the Belmont Forum. Australia, who hosts the Congress in 2021, has a unique role to play in the global community as a conduit between the Global North and the Global South, indigenous peoples and traditional sustainability practices. The local hosting consortium, led by Future Earth Australia and CSIRO, features academia and government partners from Brisbane and the State of Queensland to meet the breadth of the SRI2021 agenda.

Full conference information here:
Energy and Climate Transformations: 3rd International Conference on Energy Research & Social Science
13-16 September 2021  | University of Manchester, United Kingdom (Renold Building)

The International Conference on Energy Research and Social Science is the premier global forum for exploring the nexus of energy and society.

The conference will highlight and explore the grand societal challenges arising at the interface of global energy transformations on the one hand, and ongoing climate mitigation and adaptation efforts on the other. It will offer a vibrant and innovative forum for presenting and discussing cutting edge research on the movement towards a low carbon future as it relates to reconfigurations in energy policies, infrastructural landscapes, socio-technical systems, and social practices.

Full conference information here:
Sustainable Consumption Project:
Foraged Colour

‘Foraged Colour’ is a project led by sustainable textiles and clothing designer Linda Row. Throughout 2020 she has been working on an Arts Council England funded project together with four other artists. The aim has been to exemplify ‘localism' and 'closed loop’ through foraging for plant materials to dye British wool and producing textiles and garments from these naturally dyed yarns. The results are on the  website and the touring exhibition off the work will continue as soon as possible.

Articles by Members

The Political Economy of (Un)Sustainable Production and Consumption: A Multidisciplinary Synthesis for Research and Action

Manu V. Mathai, Cindy Isenhour, Dimitris Stevis, Philip Vergragt, Magnus Bengtsson, Sylvia Lorek, Lars Fogh Mortensen, Luca Coscieme, David Scott, Ambreen Waheed, Eva Alfredsson

Resources, Conservation and Recycling

Despite widespread recognition of the need to transition toward more sustainable production and consumption and numerous initiatives to that end, global resource extraction and corresponding socio-ecological degradation continue to grow. Understanding the causes of this persistent failure is a necessary step towards more effective action. This article contributes to that understanding by synthesizing theory and evidence that links unsustainable production-consumption systems to power and inequality. While sustainable consumption and production research and action mostly focuses on technological or behavioral change, the socio-ecological inequalities driving production-consumption systems built into the organization of our global political economy, remain largely overlooked. In response, we propose a structural political economy orientation that seeks explicitly to reduce these inequalities and advance environmental justice and, thus, create the conditions for sustainable production-consumption systems. We then propose three important arenas of research and action towards sustainable production-consumption systems: justice, governance, and co-production of knowledge and action. These arenas, collectively and individually, can serve as entry points to study and act on the dynamics of (un)sustainable production-consumption systems. This can be done at the micro level, with respect to specific commodity chains or systems of provisioning, or at meso and macro levels with respect to national and global production networks. Our proposed orientation helps distinguish research and practice proposals into those emphasizing management and compensation resulting often in persistence of unsustainability, from those proffering structural changes in unsustainable production-consumption systems. We invite critique and collaboration to develop this research and action agenda further.

Solidarity Forever: Initiatives in the Global South as a model of the post-COVID-19 solidarity economy

Ashley Colby, Emma Badini


COVID-19 has demonstrated the deficiencies of a globalized, neoliberal marketplace. In the midst of crisis, planners and policy makers tend to turn toward technologists and bureaucrats for solutions. Using the framework of the solidarity economy, we argue that innovative and sustainable infrastructure for the post-COVID-19 world exists within the Global South. This article suggests that the groundwork laid before the onset of the pandemic allowed communities to move rapidly to localized trade structures and community-based sharing initiatives. We use a case study example of a rural community in Uruguay that has innovative social structures including a local food economy, sharing networks, and co-operative arrangements. These structures render community members resilient and adaptable in the face of a global crisis. We discuss what lessons may be transmitted to the Global North as people there look to build a more sustainable and resilient society post-COVID-19.

Do online environments promote sufficiency or overconsumption? Online advertisement and social media effects on clothing, digital devices, and air travel consumption

Vivian Frick, Ellen Matthies, John Thøgersen, Tilman Santarius

Journal of Consumer Behavior

Sustainable consumption is increasingly shaped by online environments. Everyday exposure to online advertisement and social media content by peers may influence individual consumption decisions. By representative online surveys (N = 2,694), we examined how perception of online environments influences individual consumption levels of clothing, digital devices and leisure air travel, mediated by individual aspiration levels, personal and social norms. Structural equation modeling confirms relationships between perceived consumption‐promoting online content and consumption levels, fully mediated through aspiration levels. Sufficiency‐promoting online content is associated with higher social and personal norms for sufficiency, but neither of the latter are linked to aspiration or consumption levels. These findings are consistent with the hypothesis that aspiration levels and consumption decisions are influenced by consumption‐promoting online content. Due to the use of cross‐sectional data, it cannot be ruled out that these results reflect that more consumption‐oriented individuals pay more attention to consumption‐promoting online content. Hence, the dominant causal direction needs to be determined by experimental or longitudinal methods.

Why do users (not) repair their devices? A study of the predictors of repair practices

Melanie Jaeger-Erben, Vivian Frick, Tamina Hipp

Journal of Cleaner Production

Academic literature on circular economy describes repair as an important strategy to prolong the lifetime of products. However, repair is often analyzed in terms of business models or product designs and tend to underestimate the role of consumer practices and routines. The paper adds to the growing body of consumer research on repair with a particular focus on the relation between past repair behaviour, product usetimes and different product types. Based on previous research and a conceptual perspective on repair as a social practice, the paper describes a survey-based, quantitative analysis of the role of social and material settings, meanings and competences for the likelihood of repairing an object (either DIY or by repair services). We further explore the pertinence of repair for prolonging product usetimes compared to other product related practices like replacements. A model is proposed that predicts patterns of 1) how agency- and setting-related aspects are predicting repair and 2) how product related practices predict product usetimes for two different consumer goods (washing machines and smartphones). Both models were implemented and tested by structural equation modelling (SEM) with latent variables, using R lavaan. The tests revealed among others that the behavioural and financial costs for repair are perceived as high and social and material settings are more likely to impede than to enable repair. We also found that novelty seeking is an important predictor for non-repair and short product usetimes, but that there are significant differences between smartphones and washing machines. Based on our results we discuss further research and policy strategies to understand and change the current culture of non-repair.

From the suites to the streets: Examining the range of behaviors and attitudes of international climate activists

Jean Léon Boucher, Garfield T. Kwan, Gina R.Ottoboni, Mark S. McCaffrey

Energy Research and Social Science

Inspired by previous protest movements, climate activists began taking to the streets in the fall of 2018, revitalizing and reshaping the three-decade-old climate activist movement. This metamorphosis in climate activism, which has led millions around the world to participate in climate strikes and protests, is reflected in the composition of the activists themselves, who the media frequently portray as primarily young and female. In order to better understand this new and evolving landscape, we surveyed self-identifying climate activists, obtaining results from 367 individuals across 66 countries. Our survey, augmented by seven individual interviews, provides an overview of current climate activists, their attitudes, priorities, and actions. Here we map our findings, delineating differences based on gender, age, and geography. Our results indicate that the media’s focus on young female activists is warranted—at least in Europe and North America. We find that while activists share a commitment toward rapid and substantial reduction of greenhouse gases, their attitudes and actions taken to address climate change can significantly differ by demographic group. Despite its limitations, this study provides a glimpse into the demographics, behaviors, and attitudes of climate activists across the globe.

The influence of consumer behavior on energy, greenhouse gas, and water footprints of showering

Sadegh Shahmohammadi, Zoran Steinmann, Henry King, Hilde Hendrickx,  Mark A.J. Huijbregts

Journal of Industrial Ecology

Understanding variability in consumer behavior can provide further insights into how to effectively reduce environmental footprints related to household activities. Here, we developed a stochastic model to quantify the energy, greenhouse gas (GHG), and water consumption footprints of showering in four different countries (Australia, Switzerland, the United Kingdom, and the United States of America). We assessed the influence of two broadly distinct categories of behavior on the footprints of showering: habitual behaviors and one‐off reasoned actions. We also investigated whether changing showering behavior has a substantial impact on the associated energy, GHG, and water footprints. Our results show that the variation in environmental footprints within the countries due to differences in consumer behavior is a factor of 6–17 (95th percentile/5th percentile) depending on the country and the indicator selected. Both consumers’ reasoned actions (especially the choice of a specific heater and shower type) and habitual behaviors (length of showering in particular, are the dominant sources of footprint variability. Significant savings are achievable by making better one‐off decisions such as buying an efficient water heater and by taking shorter showers.
We're very pleased to welcome 3 new SCORAI members who joined the network since our last newsletter, bringing our organization's total membership to 1303 individuals.
  • Jordan King, College of Global Futures and School of Sustainability, Arizona State University
  • Paul Adler, Marshall School of Business, University of Southern California
  • Cezary Brudka, Poznan University of Economics, Heksagon Research


SCORAI (Sustainable Consumption Research and Action Initiative) is an international knowledge network of researchers and practitioners committed to building a flourishing and ecologically-sound society by changing the way we consume. We advance research, disseminate knowledge, impact policies and support campaigns. SCORAI recognizes that technological innovation alone is insufficient to address climate change and environmental threats. Therefore we support transformative changes in the economy, institutions and culture.

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