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Here at Rethinking Ethical Consumerism we are pleased to announce that we are about to start a new research project: The Ethical Household: Rethinking the Meaning of Waste in Multiple Occupancy Households.

In our previous research we have discussed how the heterogeneity of household definitions and dynamics makes it difficult for interventions and government policy to make an impact on household ethical consumerism. Particularly difficult to understand and predict are the behaviours of those who live together with unrelated occupants. How the varying relationship dynamics between these individuals impacts on ethical decision-making within the household is still somewhat of a mystery. With house prices in the UK rising and an increase in single people living in shared spaces, this section of the community has the potential to have a significant impact on the effective implementation of policy initiatives to reduce single use plastics.

This new project will use online design thinking workshops to create a discursive forum to elicit collectively discussed, householder-driven, solutions to the issues identified in the previous diary and interview study.

Online participants will be drawn from particular areas of London focusing specifically on the household decision making about single use plastics in multiple-occupancy households where issues of responsibility and control differ from a traditional family context.

This research will inform a pathway towards long-term sustainable management and greater understanding of the householder’s experience with single use plastics.

We are grateful to Birkbeck, University of London, who are funding this project.

If you would like to find out more about what we have planned, or have information that you think would help to inform our study, please get in touch.


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