Welcome to the Sustainable Lifestyles Research Group (SLRG). Our principal aim is to develop new and relevant understandings of the processes which lead to changes in people’s lifestyles, behaviours and practices; and to offer evidence-based advice to policy-makers about realistic strategies to encourage more sustainable lifestyles.
Our core funding is provided jointly by the Department for the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA), the Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC) and the Scottish Government. Additional funding for individual projects has been won from the European Commission and from the ESRC.
The research programme of the SLRG is coordinated from the University of Surrey [CES] under the direction of Professor Tim Jackson. Ian Christie is the Research Coordinator. Our partners include the University of Bath, Edinburgh University, the University of Sussex, the Institute for Fiscal Studies and Brunel University. We also work closely with non-academic partners including Peterborough City Council, the RSA and the United Nations Environment Programme.
The overall research aims of our programme are as follows:
- to develop an integrated, inter-disciplinary understanding of the relationship between human behaviour, social practices, technological systems and sustainability;
- to build a sound conceptual basis for understanding and influencing change processes aimed at sustainable living;
- to synthesise relevant findings from existing and on-going research on behaviour, practices, lifestyle and social change in a form accessible to policy-makers;
- to develop primary research studies aimed at elucidating key social, psychological, and structural dimensions of lifestyle change;
- to engage in and evaluate action-research initiatives aimed at sustainability – at community, organisation and household levels;
- to undertake or commission targeted research to inform specific policy campaigns or strategies;
- to expand UK research capacity on sustainable living, providing a unique opportunity for the transfer of knowledge and experience between academic and non-academic communities;
- to promote the UK as an international centre of excellence in research and policy for sustainable living.
Our research portfolio comprises around a dozen projects within four main research clusters:
Over and above the research aims of the work programme, the SLRG is dedicated to building capacity for research in sustainable lifestyles amongst academics, young researchers, practitioners, and user communities. Above all SLRG aims to provide a vital resource for policy-makers attempting to influence the behaviours and practices of households, business and communities.