1st Edition

Teaching and Learning Sustainable Consumption A Guidebook

    396 Pages 84 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    396 Pages 84 B/W Illustrations
    by Routledge

    This book is a comprehensive guide on how to teach sustainable consumption in higher education. Teaching and Learning Sustainable Consumption: A Guidebook systematizes the themes, objectives, and theories that characterize sustainable consumption as an educational field.

    The first part of the book discusses approaches to teaching and learning sustainable consumption in higher education, including reflections on how learning occurs, to more practical considerations like how to set objectives or assess learning outcomes. The second part of the book is a dive into inspiring examples of what this looks like in a range of contexts and towards different aims – involving 57 diverse contributions by teachers and practitioners. Building on the momentum of a steady increase in courses addressing sustainable consumption over the past decade, this guidebook supports innovative approaches to teaching and learning, while also bringing to the fore conceptual debates around higher education and sustainability.

    Overall, this book will be a seminal resource for educators teaching about sustainability and consumption. It will help them to navigate the specifics of sustainable consumption as a field of scholarship, and design their teaching approaches in a more informed, competent, and creative way.

    PART I Design considerations for teaching and learning sustainable consumption

    1 Sustainable consumption, a tricky topic to teach
    Marlyne Sahakian, Jordan King, Jen Dyer, Daniel Fischer, and Gill Seyfang

    2 Learning theories and pedagogies in teaching sustainable consumption
    Daniel Fischer, Jordan King, Marlyne Sahakian, Jen Dyer, and Gill Seyfang

    3 Learning objectives for teaching sustainable consumption
    Jordan King, Daniel Fischer, Marlyne Sahakian, Jen Dyer, and Gill Seyfang

    4 Assessing learning in teaching sustainable consumption
    Jordan King, Daniel Fischer, Marlyne Sahakian, Jen Dyer, and Gill Seyfang

    PART II Examples of teaching and learning sustainable consumption
    Marlyne Sahakian, Jordan King, Jen Dyer, Daniel Fischer, and Gill Seyfang

    5 The good life game: bargaining needs and resources
    Lisa Hollands and Shirin Betzler

    6 A letter to Aadya: uncovering social injustices in fast fashion
    Samira Iran and Anja Lisa Hirscher

    7 Clothing libraries: on-campus stores as real-world experiments for sustainable fashion
    Samira Iran, Anja Lisa Hirscher, and Daniel Fischer

    8 How to draw the economy? Putting care and nature back into economic models
    Lucie Sovová

    9 Powering practices: developing scenarios for energy futures
    Tom Hargreaves

    10 Speculative fiction for energy futures
    Tom Hargreaves and Jos Smith

    11 The story of your gadget
    Gill Seyfang

    12 From trash to treasure! Turning junk into Christmas-time gifts
    I-Liang Wahn

    13 Practice makes perfect! Exploring how practices cause consumption problems, and are also part of the solution
    Marlyne Sahakian and Mallory Xinyu Zhan

    14 A playful take on non-financial disclosure processes: speed dating with organizations and frameworks
    Georgina Guillen-Hanson

    15 Decarbonise! A playful pathfinding approach to a sustainable future
    Veronika Kiss and Klára Hajdu

    16 Let’s report a future practice: interview roleplay as a way to flesh out alternatives
    Lenneke KuiJer

    17 Company walk’n’talk: learning by sharing about corporate sustainability practices
    Lisa Hollands and Shirin Betzler

    18 Asking the (sustainable consumption) professionals!
    Eva Heiskanen

    19 The supermarket sweep: what do labels (not) tell us?
    Gill Seyfang

    20 To build or not to build? Roleplay for conflict management
    Valerie Brachya

    21 Theoretical theater: personifying theoretical ‘Characters’ to facilitate critical thinking
    Gill Seyfang and Marlyne Sahakian

    22 The change point toolkit for teaching: designing creative interventions
    Alison L. Browne, Claire Hoolohan, Katherine Ellsworth-Krebs, and Liz Sharp

    23 Consumption detectives: an imagination exercise
    Shirin Betzler, Jessica Jung, Lisa Hollands, and Regina Kempen

    24 Speak up! Debating critical voices
    Shirin Betzler and Lisa Hollands

    25 The clothesline for sustainability: can individual actions contribute to strong sustainable consumption?
    Sylvia Lorek

    26 Go Bananas! What everyday foods tell us about sustainability
    Sally Russell

    27 Creature of habit!
    Cornelia Mayr

    28 The power of one? Engaging students to reflect on individual agency to confront environmental issues
    Emily Huddart Kennedy

    29 Pizza policy misto: our perfect recipe for sustainable food consumption
    Sylvia Lorek

    30 Contemplating consumption: a meditation and mindfulness exercise
    Manisha Anantharaman and Daniel Fischer

    31 Walk’n’Write: ref lecting on efficiency, consistency, and sufficiency
    Shirin Betzler and Lisa Hollands

    32 It’s all about the message: promoting sustainability through communication design
    Doreen Donovan

    33 Second-hand clothing experienced first-hand: sustainable consumption through situated learning
    Heike Derwanz

    34 Dressed for sustainability success: a capsule wardrobe project
    Iva Jestratijevic

    35 Listen up! The role of podcasts for understanding environmental issues as a social construct
    Juliet Fall and Karine Duplan

    36 Create a website: a hands-on approach to communicate sustainable consumption
    Karin Dobernig

    37 Organizing for impact: strategic planning and community collaboration for social change towards sustainable consumption
    Manisha Anantharaman and Suzanne Schmidt

    38 Who knows where the money goes? Using a spending diary to reflect on consumption habits
    Meredith Katz

    39 Learning to change myself: personal approaches to sustainable consumption
    Pascal Frank

    40 Extracting sustainability: exposing the impacts from mining to supply the electronics industry
    Robert Rattle

    41 Capturing sustainable energy solutions on camera
    Tom Hargreaves

    42 Packed with sustainability!
    Urška Vrabič-Brodnjak

    43 Uncovering economies of sustainability: looking at alternatives to the status quo
    Helen Holmes

    44 Learning from the past? A socio-historical approach to food practices
    Stefan Wahlen

    45 Using zombies to communicate climate change!
    Petra Bättig-Frey and Urs Müller

    46 The 21-day sustainability challenge
    Carmen Valor

    47 Whodunnit? Role-playing to understand stakeholder perspectives through corporate scandals
    Georgina Guillen-Hanson

    48 Brave new world? Getting in a digitalized and globalized state of mind
    Piergiorgio Degli Esposti

    49 A change is gonna come: designing campus interventions to promote behavior change for sustainable consumption
    Jordan King, Daniel Fischer, and Katja Brundiers

    50 I can’t get no satisfaction: deliberating needs and satisfiers in sustainable consumption
    Daniel Fischer, Jordan King, and Carlos R. Casanova

    51 Business Origami! Piecing together product life cycles in the product-service system
    Kersty Hobson

    52 Covering one’s tracks: an ecological footprint game and debate
    Karin Dobernig and Karl-Michael Brunner

    53 Mobility, what opportunities for urban development and public policies?
    Marlyne Sahakian

    54 From field research to design fiction: from clarifying the present, to designing the future
    Nicolas Nova

    55 What we eat and why: narratives of food justice
    Sunayana Ganguly and Shreelata Rao Sheshadri

    56 How hard can it be to change practices?
    Margit Keller and Triin Vihalemm

    57 An intra-active exhibition on feminist theory
    Tullia Jack

    58 What I am wondering …: a teacher training program on how to find and answer questions of sustainable consumption
    Antonietta Di Giulio

    59 Feel and think! Teaching aspiring school teachers to teach slow fashion
    Heike Derwanz

    60 Future voyaging: the power of imagining the future today
    Frederikke Oldin and Charlotte Louise Jensen

    61 Don’t just learn the lesson, live the lesson: study abroad trips for collaborative and community-based sustainability
    Ashley Colby


    Daniel Fischer is Associate Professor for Consumer Communication and Sustainability at Wageningen University in the Netherlands. His research studies communication and learning interventions to advance more sustainable lifestyles. In his teaching, he strives to increase reflexivity in students to empower them to re-shape their relationships with the consumer societies into which they have been born, encultured, and socialized in.

    Marlyne Sahakian is Associate Professor in Sociology at the University of Geneva. She teaches and does research on sustainable consumption in relation to food, energy, and wellbeing, and is a founding member of SCORAI Europe, a research network for sustainable consumption. She is the Director of a Master’s program called Sustainable Societies and Social Change, and strives to give students the critical and practical competencies for tackling sustainability problems.

    Jordan King is a doctoral candidate in the School of Sustainability and College of Global Futures at Arizona State University. His work focuses on advancing innovations in cultivating and assessing the sustainability competencies of learners. In his teaching, he aims to motivate students to link inner transformations with systemic change for sustainable futures.

    Jen Dyer is Associate Professor in Sustainability at the University of Leeds and a Senior Fellow of the Higher Education Academy. Jen enjoys using creative teaching methods to inspire and empower her students. Her research focuses on social inclusion and amplifying diverse voices around sustainability.

    Gill Seyfang is Associate Professor of Sustainable Consumption in the School of Environmental Sciences at the University of East Anglia, UK. She researches grassroots innovations for sustainable development and is a National Teaching Fellow (2017).