Saturday, October 25, 2008

Joining an organized session at AAG

Truth be told I agonized over getting an organized session at AAG for the longest time. The original session I wanted on food and vulnerability was full(!) and so I turned away from the cultural and political ecology group and found that the Environmental Perception and Behavioral Geography Specialty Group had a session on geographies of sustainable consumption.

I tweaked my abstract a lil and sent it in! The organizers turned out to be quite excited about my paper even though I'm talking about production as much as consumption. Apparently the session has turned out to be quite popular and was split into several. Today I finally took the guts to check out the session I'm in and hold and behold, I was grouped together with Michael Goodman! I don't know how big of a name is he but the fact that I've read him several times in my literature reviews makes me extremely excited. I think I even quoted him in one of my papers. *giggle like a schoolgirl* Wait, I am a schoolgirl!

The reason why joining organized sessions is really important is as Henry told us at GRS. If you go to a generic session, you may be placed together with random people. Chances of getting a big name is slim and so you might get zero audience. Maybe just you and the chair. Gosh some of the speakers might not even turn up. Having a big name guarantees you some audience which is good! And of course the networking! W00t! Either way, I didn't expect Goodman but damn it's good.

And I'm really excited about the other speakers too. Shit that's what going to a conference should be about. Learning and exchanging ideas.

Geographies of Sustainable Lifestyles I: Conceptualising Consumption

The start of the 21st century has been characterised by urgent calls to examine the role of consumption in driving global environmental change and framing responses to these ecological dilemmas. Indeed, the ways in which consumption has been constituted and influenced by environmental, technological, economic, social and political processes have become critical issues for geographers. The convergence of these two research agendas has therefore provided geographers and other social science researchers with a range of opportunities to explore the emerging contexts for 'sustainable lifestyles' and the growing political importance of behaviour change. These have been undertaken at a range of scales (from individuals and households, to organisations and institutions) and have examined numerous environmentally-related practices that encompass consumptive, habitual and 'post-consumption' behaviours. Indeed, research in this field is characterised by a range of theoretical and applied approaches. Accordingly, this session aims to bring together geographers and other social scientists who are engaged in research on sustainable consumption, lifestyles and behaviour change. The session will provide an opportunity to explore the range of approaches towards sustainable consumption and will enable delegates to share theoretical and practical experiences from their research. We welcome contributions from researchers who are exploring this wide field, including those working on issues such as energy conservation, water resources, waste management, travel and transport, leisure and tourism and the broader field of ethical and green consumption. Contributions are welcome from those working at different scales (e.g. individual, household, organisational) and in a range of contexts (socio-economic, cultural, environmental).

Anticipated Attendance: 40

Frances Fahy
Stewart Barr

Stewart Barr

Michael K Goodman, Encountering (Ethical) Consumption and the Limits to an Ethics of Care
Jonathan Everts, The Ethical Consumer?
November Peng Ting Tan, Producing "Ethical Food" in the Singapore-Malaysia Vegetable Trade System
Louise Rutt, Commodifying Charity: Alternative Giving as Ethical Consumption
Lucy Cartlidge, The 'making' of eco-homes in England

Environmental Perception and Behavioral Geography Specialty Group

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