Delighted to have been invited to visit colleagues at the Global Sustainability Institute of Anglia Ruskin University in Cambridge. Over my week-long visit (24th – 28th February 2020), I’ll be catching up with old and new colleagues working on social science sustainability research and hosting a methodology research seminar exploring practice-based approaches to researching past consumption practices. During my stay we’ll also be holding a methodology focused reading group on practice theory, method and intervention.

The methodology-focused seminar, entitled Can People Talk About Their Past Practices?, will focus on exploring the value of biographic-narrative inquiry as a methodological medium for practice-theoretical investigations of everyday consumption practices.  While it has been argued that people can talk about routine practice individually (cf. Hitchings, 2011) or in groups (cf. Browne, 2016), as of yet there has been little consideration of whether people can retrospectively talk about their past practices, over timescales of several decades, such as that of the biographic lifecourse. This seminar will begin to address this gap. In doing so, the seminar will discuss the particular challenges and opportunities of using retrospective biographic talk-elicitation methods for researching past action and informing interventions for improved sustainability.