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Reframing Individual Responsibility for Sustainable Consumption: Lessons from Environmental Justice and Ecological Citizenship

Author

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  • Lucie Middlemiss

Abstract

In this paper I consider the concept of responsibility within sustainable consumption. The paper was inspired by interviews with individuals engaged in community action for sustainability, where respondents held a rather individualistic conception of responsibility. In order to develop a deeper understanding of responsibility I compare sustainable consumption, environmental justice and ecological citizenship literatures. This leads me to develop a new conceptual framework which explains responsibility in relation to the ecological footprint. This framework recognises both the responsibility of the individual for sustainable practice and the limitations on individual action due to their context. It also allows for differentiation between individuals' responsibilities given people's circumstances and their ability to engage with change.

Suggested Citation

  • Lucie Middlemiss, 2010. "Reframing Individual Responsibility for Sustainable Consumption: Lessons from Environmental Justice and Ecological Citizenship," Environmental Values, White Horse Press, vol. 19(2), pages 147-167, May.
  • Handle: RePEc:env:journl:ev19:ev1907
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    Cited by:

    1. Clive L. Spash, 2012. "Response and Responsibility," Environmental Values, White Horse Press, vol. 21(4), pages 391-396, November.
    2. Diana Mincyte, 2012. "How milk does the world good: vernacular sustainability and alternative food systems in post-socialist Europe," Agriculture and Human Values, Springer;The Agriculture, Food, & Human Values Society (AFHVS), vol. 29(1), pages 41-52, March.
    3. Ty Raterman, 2012. "Bearing the Weight of the World: On the Extent of an Individual's Environmental Responsibility," Environmental Values, White Horse Press, vol. 21(4), pages 417-436, November.
    4. Young, William & Middlemiss, Lucie, 2012. "A rethink of how policy and social science approach changing individuals' actions on greenhouse gas emissions," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 41(C), pages 742-747.
    5. Sarah Hards, 2011. "Social Practice and the Evolution of Personal Environmental Values," Environmental Values, White Horse Press, vol. 20(1), pages 23-42, February.
    6. repec:gam:jsusta:v:10:y:2018:i:1:p:263-:d:127806 is not listed on IDEAS

    More about this item

    Keywords

    Sustainable consumption; ecological footprint; responsibility; individualisation; practice theory;

    JEL classification:

    • D63 - Microeconomics - - Welfare Economics - - - Equity, Justice, Inequality, and Other Normative Criteria and Measurement
    • Q01 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - General - - - Sustainable Development
    • Q26 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Renewable Resources and Conservation - - - Recreational Aspects of Natural Resources

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