Conference Panels Announced!

We are thrilled to announce that we have had 4 panels accepted for the PSA Annual Conference in Nottingham next year. Details of the panels are included below. Congratulations to all the authors! We will announce the times and locations of the panels when they are confirmed closer to the conference date. Registration for the conference is now open, and early bird rates are available until Monday 28 January. See the PSA website here for more details on how to register.

In addition to our panels, we will also be holding our AGM and our annual social event at the conference in Nottingham. More information about these events will be published on our website closer to the conference date.

Further details on our panels and papers are below:

Post-Soviet Environmental and Climate Politics

The post-Soviet Eurasian space is of huge regional and global environmental significance, and yet the region is often overlooked within the environmental politics literature. This panel will explore some of the key challenges facing the region, highlighting important themes such as policy development and decision-making, public awareness of environmental issues, and institution building. The papers reflect the diversity of new research being conducted on post-Soviet Eurasia, including climate narratives in Central Asia, renewable energy development in Russia, and environmental state capacity in Russia and Georgia.

The papers included in this panel are:

  • Dr Ellie Martus (University of Warwick) Environmental State Capacity in Eurasia
  • Dr Marianna Poberezhskaya (Nottingham Trent University), Dr Natasha Danilova (University of Aberdeen) Understanding climate change narratives in Central Asia
  • Dr Olga Khrushcheva (Manchester Metropolitan University), Critical evaluation of the RES support mechanism in Russia

Are We All Environmentalists Now? The influence of environmentalism on individual and state-based actors

This panel examines the extent to which environmentalism continues to influence public opinion and political decision-making. In doing so, it highlights the ongoing salience of environmental ideas within an individual, state, and multi-level context, but also the need to update our understanding of pro-environmental behaviour within the current political climate. Clements and Carter begin the discussion by examining how British public opinion on environmentalism has changed over time, and the influence that this has had on political behaviour and government decision-making. Leatham then analyses the liberation of the environmentally-concerned individual through their constitution as consumers, and the extent to which this will actually contribute to improving global sustainability. Burns, Eckersley and Tobin examine environmental policy change within a multi-level context, and consider why there is a surprisingly limited number of examples within the EU of environmental policy being ‘dismantled’. Lockwood examines the way in which governments can convince actors of the credibility of their climate mitigation policies, by examining the carbon budget setting process in the UK and Energy Agreements in Denmark. Finally, Tobin introduces the concept of a ‘Carbon Neutral State’ as a new descriptive and analytical tool for examining states’ ambitions towards climate change. The discussions in this panel have implications for policy-makers who seek to understand why environmental action is or isn’t working, and what can be done about this.

The papers included in this panel are:

  • Dr. Ben Clements (University of Leicester) and Professor Neil Carter (University of York) Greener and Greener? A long-term perspective on the British public and environmental issues
  • Scott Leatham (De Montfort University) The Spectacle of Sustainability in the Post-Ecological Era: A Political-Ecological Critique of Green Consumerism
  • Professor Charlotte Burns (University of Sheffield), Dr. Peter Eckersley (Nottingham Trent University), and Dr. Paul Tobin (University of Manchester) Policy dismantling in a multilevel context: the case of environmental protection in the EU
  • Matthew Lockwood (University of Exeter) Credible carbon commitment: Majoritarian and proportional visions
  • Dr. Paul Tobin (University of Manchester) The Carbon Neutral State: Reconceptualising the Green State towards climate mitigation

New Advances in the Study of Pro-Environmental Behaviour Change

No one is in doubt that current consumer practices are environmentally unsustainable in terms of carbon emissions, resource use, waste and pollution. There is also some agreement that consumers themselves should be at least partly responsible for redressing this. Much existing research on behaviour change has focused on attitudes and cognitive models, or has drawn on social practice theory. Together, these prominent approaches have resulted in DEFRA’s Framework for Sustainable Lifestyles. This posits the need to enable, encourage, exemplify and engage (the four Es)consumers and citizens to change their behaviour. But exactly how can consumers and citizens be enabled, encouraged, exemplified and engaged to adopt pro-environmental behaviour? What evidence is there that these four Es actually work? Moreover, are there other important drivers of pro-environmental behaviour?

This panel brings together papers that provide fresh insights into the mechanisms of pro-environmental behaviour change. In particular, it seeks to assess different strategies for encouraging and assessing pro-environmental behaviour change using novel methodologies and / or fields of inquiry. The panel is motivated to explore mechanisms that might determine the success of the four Es such as emotions, meaning and affect; as well as strategies for assimilating pro-environmental behaviour changes in the work place or at critical junctures in the life course. Our panel has important implications for policy-makers in showing how positive and meaningful emotions and affect can promote pro-environmental behaviour; and in suggesting that community spaces, the work place and university – or other sites where behaviours can be shared among peers – are potentially fruitful vehicles for such change.

The papers included in this panel are:

  • Roger Tyers (University of Southampton) Migration and behaviour change: can green norms cross borders?
  • Sally Russell (University of Leeds) Examining the role of emotion as a driver of pro-environmental behaviour
  • Clare Saunders, Fiona Hackney, Joanie Willett, Irene Griffin, Katie Hill and Anya Barbieri (Universities of Exeter and Wolverhampton) Designing a sensibility for sustainable clothing: the role of craft in encouraging pro-environmental behaviour change
  • Milena Buchs and Matthew Hogarth (University of Leeds) Carbon reduction behaviours – spill over from work to home?
  • Dan Bloomfield, Clare Saunders and Luci Isaacson (University of Exeter) Carbon pledging: Eight years on

Radical Environmental Politics for the Anthropocene

During these precarious and rapidly shifting times, among the most pressing concerns are the mounting ecological crises such as increasing climatic perturbations, ubiquitous plastic pollution, toxification, rampant deforestation, and crucially, the systematic eradication of our planet’s biotic life via the sixth mass extinction that characterize the Anthropocene. The myriad deficiencies of this era of a humanity-turned-geological-force (though the word ‘humanity’ undoubtedly conceals a wealth of differential culpability for the present era across historical, geographical, and socioeconomic lines) have also paradoxically revealed the myth that is human exceptionalism by unveiling the power and agentic capacities of non-human actants in the form of super storms, phytoplankton, and tropical diseases such as zika. Human activity, largely in the form of ceaseless-growth-oriented socioeconomic trajectories, has undermined the material foundations of its own wellbeing as well as that of other species and the biosphere at large. The same logics of ceaseless growth and profit maximization above all else have resulted in grotesque socioeconomic inequities wherein a mere 42 individuals possess more wealth than half the world. Increasingly, the answer as to whether or not present political and socioeconomic institutions and practices are sustainable is a resounding ‘no’. It is of the essence, both existentially and ethically, that we explore and critically assess radically new modes of socioeconomic development, organization, and approaches to the ethico-political that are equitable, ecologically resilient and, crucially, incorporate more-than-human actants as valued members of a shared ‘cosmopolitics’. The papers featured on this panel in varying ways attempt to think through such vital endeavours, in the hopes of moving ever closer to a more resilient socio-ecological order that as of yet remains a very real possibility.

The papers included in this panel are:

  • Dr Kevin Love and Heather Alberro (Nottingham Trent University) Resisting Biological Annihilation: The Politics of Loss
  • James McIntyre (Loughborough University) Saving the World by Taking it Easy: On the Utopian Convergence of Post-Work Politics and Radical Ecology
  • Heather Alberro (Nottingham Trent University) Towards a Cosmo-Politics? A Critical Analysis of the Nonhuman ‘Other’ in Ecotopian Socio-Political Formations
  • Dr. Marit Hammond (Keele University) Green Political Theory in the Anthropocene: Governing the Ungraspable

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s