Call for papers for Energy and Everyday Life session at the RGS-IBG Conference 2018

The RGS-IBG Annual International Conference 2018 will take place from 28-31 August at Cardiff University with the theme “Geographical landscapes / changing landscapes of geography”. You can find more information about the conference here.
This is a call for papers that address the lived experience of energy systems change and is sponsored by the RGS Planning and Environment Research Group.
Session Title: Energy and Everyday Life: Exploring the Lived Experience of Energy Systems Change
This session explores the lived experience of energy systems change in diverse landscapes. In the context of the predominant neoliberal approach to development, energy policies in (post)-industrialised and developing countries have been predominantly techno-centric in nature. However, it is increasingly recognised that energy is not just a technical but a deeply social issue, reflecting and shaping the social, economic, cultural and political structures of societies. Energy geographies has recently emerged as a rapidly growing cross-cutting subfield of human geographical inquiry in which contextualised approaches to understanding dynamics of energy system change are emerging to challenge eco-modernised and techno-centric approaches to transitions. Furthermore, the importance of the lived experience and practice of daily life as it plays out in domestic and community contexts is also increasingly recognised by both scholars and practitioners working in energy transitions contexts. However, despite these promising developments towards more situated, contextual insights, many questions remain. For example:
  • how do lives, practices and contexts intersect in the context of energy systems change?
  • In what ways do power, capability, inequality and social differentiation (e.g. gender, class, race) interact in energy systems change?
  • How are patterns of social relations, interaction and social capital shaped by dynamics in energy systems?
  • What potential do qualitative, experience-centred methodologies have for revealing insights into hitherto overlooked contextual processes and mechanisms shaping everyday energy practices?
  • What can be learned by analysing the lived experience of energy transitions as it plays out in diverse spatial (e.g. developing or developed) and temporal (e.g. contemporary or historical) contexts?
  • How might situated, ethnographic energy transitions research inform policy at local, national and international scales?

We invite papers addressing these and related themes in exploring the lived experience of energy systems change in a range of present-day and historical contexts, including domestic, community, urban, rural, developed and developing.

Please send your abstract of no more than 300 words to Mary Greene (mary.greene@nuigalway.ie) and Anne Schiffer (a.schiffer@leedsbeckett.ac.uk) by Friday 9th February.

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