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Wanted: North East Scotland residents’ views on sustainable lifestyles

Social scientists are looking into sustainable lifestyles (By Elliot Bennett)
"We are asking questions about flexible working arrangements, the factors influencing where people choose to live, quality of sleep, perceptions of time pressure, and engagement in pro-environmental behaviours.

A large number of residents of Aberdeen City and Aberdeenshire are being sent a questionnaire about their lifestyles as part of a research project that aims to find out more about the economic, social, individual and environmental benefits of participating in sustainable lifestyle initiatives, and how these initiatives can be used to support more sustainable domestic energy use, transport, building fabric, food, consumption of material goods, and work-life balance.

Funded by the European Commission, the €5M Green Lifestyles, Alternative Models and Upscaling Regional Sustainability (Glamurs) project is being carried out by researchers from eleven international institutions including the James Hutton Institute.

Dr Tony Craig, social scientist at the Institute’s Aberdeen site, said: “One of the things we are particularly interested in is time. The feeling that there is not enough time to do everything is not a new thing, but sometimes it can seem like the modern world is defined by this feeling. The rush and busyness of everyday life may leave us feeling we have little time or energy to engage with more environmentally sustainable behaviours or think about alternative ways of living.

“In this survey, we are asking questions about flexible working arrangements, the factors influencing where people choose to live, quality of sleep, perceptions of time pressure, and engagement in pro-environmental behaviours. If you receive one of our questionnaires, we would be really grateful if you could fill it in and return it using the prepaid envelope, or use the link sent with the survey to complete the questionnaire online.”

Dr Gary Polhill, leader of the GLAMURS team at the James Hutton Institute, added: “Sustainability is an important but complicated issue with economic, social and individual dimensions: we strive to produce and consume goods, while simultaneously aiming to avoid social inequality, and leading enjoyable and satisfying lives.

“The project will use advanced agent-based computer simulations to try and connect all these things together, and explore whether proposed scenarios can really deliver the sustainable lifestyles we need.”

Professor Colin Campbell, interim Chief Executive at the James Hutton Institute, commented: “Through participation in the project survey, North East residents can help us better understand the sustainability of current lifestyles. This will contribute to the Institute’s goal of delivering evidence-based solutions to the global challenges facing land and natural resource use.”

You can find out more about the research from the project’s website.

More information from: 

Bernardo Rodriguez-Salcedo, Media Manager, Tel: +44 (0)1224 395089 (direct line), +44 (0)344 928 5428 (switchboard) or +44 (0)7791 193918 (mobile).

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Printed from /news/wanted-north-east-scotland-residents%E2%80%99-views-sustainable-lifestyles on 16/06/19 10:11:40 AM

The James Hutton Research Institute is the result of the merger in April 2011 of MLURI and SCRI. This merger formed a new powerhouse for research into food, land use, and climate change.