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Systems of Sustainable Consumption and Production
Webinar: Business Opportunities to Promote Sufficiency-oriented Lifestyles
Future Earth

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Webinar: Business Opportunities to Promote Sufficiency-oriented Lifestyles

Date: June 04, 2024

11:00 UTC (07:00 EDT | 13:00 CEST | 20:00 JST)

Platform: ZOOM LINK

Early Career Researchers Webinar Series on Sustainable Lifestyles Session 5

Maike Gossen and Laura Niessen

Sufficiency requires both lifestyle changes on the part of consumers and companies that support this change by adapting their business models and marketing strategies. In a sufficiency-oriented business model, the principles of sufficiency are embedded in the core purpose that drives companies to conscientiously assess and measure their impact on people, values, resources and the environment and to take responsibility for their actions. While companies use various strategies to promote sufficiency, such as offering repair services or refusing discounts, the impact of sufficiency strategies often remains unclear. In this webinar, we will present recent research on companies that support sufficiency-oriented lifestyles and discuss the impact of their sufficiency-promoting marketing initiatives. We will then discuss the systemic barriers that prevent companies from pursuing such strategies. These include, at the macro level, the growth-oriented economy and consumer culture and, at the micro level, the individualization of responsibility for sufficiency, shareholder-driven corporate logic and the way corporate performance is measured.

Speaker BIO

Maike Gossen, is postdoctoral researcher at the Department of Economic Education and Sustainable Consumption since January 2024. Prior to this, she led the research project Green Consumption Assistant at the Department of Sustainable Digitalization and Socio-Ecological Transformation at TU Berlin, conducting interdisciplinary research on digital interventions for sustainable consumption. Before that, she spent several years researching sustainable consumption at the Institute for Ecological Economic Research (IÖW) in Berlin, leading numerous third-party funded projects. In the BMBF-funded junior research group “Digitalization and Socio-Ecological Transformation,” she obtained her PhD on Sufficiency-promoting marketing by companies.

Speaker BIO

Laura Niessen is a PhD researcher working on sufficiency (sustainable consumption) through business and circular business models under the ERC funded Circular X project at the Maastricht Sustainability Institute. In her research, she looks into the role that companies can play in promoting sufficiency amongst their customers. Firms can promote sufficiency through diverse strategies, such as offering long-lifetime products, supporting repair or reuse, or changing their marketing and advertising strategies. Laura’s research uncovers the side of the business, as well as how such strategies can affect consumers. She also compiled and updates a database of over 150 businesses that promote sufficiency to inspire other firms and show what is already being done.

Hosted by the Future Earth Knowledge-Action Network on Systems of Sustainable Consumption and Production | Handbook of Research on Sustainable Lifestyles

The Handbook on Sustainable Lifestyles is an initiative supported by the SSCP KAN. This webinar series is an opportunity for Early Career Researchers (ECRs) who are contributing to topics that will be featured in the Handbook to present their work.