NEW SSE Dissertation
''In the on-going efforts to achieve a more sustainable society, consumers are expected to transform production and consumption through their daily choices. Yet, their capacity to act green is considered to be limited and they are typically seen as in need of various self-help tools and green guidance. This gives the impression that consumers are both active and passive at the same time, which makes it difficult to determine their capacity to act. However, instead of assuming that consumers are either active or passive by default, this thesis takes on a practice perspective to study the production of consumer agency and their capacity to do green.
Through a series of both historical and contemporary case studies of food consumption as production, exchange, and usage, this thesis delves deeper into the everyday life of consumers and the socio-material practices involved in producing green food consumption. The thesis asserts that green consumption is a collective achievement, rather than being determined by the consumer’s inherent capability to do green. The multiple socio-material actors that together produce green consumption is highlighted, in which the consumer is also an integral part. Thus, the green consumer is both produced and part of producing green consumption. The processes involved in producing consumers are theorized as the agencing and concerning of consumers, whereby consumers become equipped and concerned to do green in everyday food practices.''
The author is a researcher and teacher at the Mistra Center for Sustainable Markets (MISUM) at the Stockholm School of Economics.