Webinar: Towards a sociology of sustainable consumption
Welcome to our new seminar series «Consumption and sustainability». The first speaker is Professor Alan Warde who will discuss the sociology of sustainable consumption.
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There is widespread agreement that mitigation of the effects of climate change require radical modification of the consumption patterns of the rich (both rich people and rich countries). This talk explores the role sociology might play in understanding sustainable consumption. It briefly reviews developments in the sub-disciplinary field of the sociology of consumption to expose limitations in its current capacity to analyse or promote sustainability. A number of generic sociological issues arise concerning objectivity and partisanship, inter-disciplinarity, theories of culture and action, macro- and micro- analysis, and approaches to power and domination. The discussion is illustrated with reference to a remarkable report, the 'EAT - Lancet commission on healthy diets from sustainable food systems' (2019), which proposes principles to guide a global transformation in eating patterns. Implications of the report are examined to help formulate a research programme for a sociology of consumption suitable for understanding a climate emergency.
About Alan Warde
Alan Warde is Emeritus Professor at the Sociology Department, University of Manchester. He has for decades been a leading scholar in the broad field of consumption research, and has made groundbreaking contributions to sustainable consumption, food consumption and much more. His recent books include The Social Significance of Dining Out (Manchester University Press, 2020, with Jessica Paddock and Jennifer Whillans), Consumption: a sociological analysis (Palgrave, 2017) and The Practice of Eating (Polity, 2016).
About this webinar
This webinar is part of a new seminar series: Consumption and sustainability. The seminar series focuses on the frontiers of research on consumption and sustainability. Through talks by leading scholars in the field, the seminar series addresses some of the world’s most pressing challenges.