Attentive, speculative experimental research for sustainability transitions: An exploration in sustainable eating

Minna Kaljonen, Taru Peltola, Marja Salo, Eeva Furman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

Abstract

The critical role of everyday practices in climate change mitigation has placed experimental approaches at the top of the environmental policy agenda. In this paper we discuss the value of behavioural approaches, practice theories, pragmatic tinkering and speculative thinking with respect to experimentation. Whereas the first two have been much discussed within sustainability science and transition research, the notions of pragmatic tinkering and speculative thinking radically broaden the scope of experimental research and its contribution to sustainable everyday practices. Pragmatism brings to the fore the need to coordinate multiple practices and understandings of good eating, as these may clash in practice. Through this lens, the value of experimental research lies in revealing frictions that need to be resolved, or tinkered, in practice. Speculative experimentation, in turn, refers to the power of experiments to challenge the experimental setting itself and force thinking about new possibilities and avenues. We investigate the value of all four approaches in relation to our experiments with sustainable eating in the Finnish and Nordic context. Our elaboration justifies the need to broaden the conception of experimental research in order to capture the multiplicity of sustainable eating. Hence, we call for attentive, speculative experimental research aimed not only at testing solutions for sustainable everyday practice, but also at reflecting on the practice of experimentation itself.
LanguageEnglish
JournalJournal of Cleaner Production
Volume206
Pages365-373
Number of pages9
ISSN0959-6526
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Jan 2019
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

Fields of Science

  • CHOICE
  • COMMUNITY
  • CONSUMPTION
  • DESIGN
  • ENERGY
  • Eating
  • Experimental research
  • Experiments
  • FOOD
  • Food
  • HEALTH
  • INNOVATION
  • POLICY
  • Sustainable practices
  • 1172 Environmental sciences
  • 416 Food Science

Cite this

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abstract = "The critical role of everyday practices in climate change mitigation has placed experimental approaches at the top of the environmental policy agenda. In this paper we discuss the value of behavioural approaches, practice theories, pragmatic tinkering and speculative thinking with respect to experimentation. Whereas the first two have been much discussed within sustainability science and transition research, the notions of pragmatic tinkering and speculative thinking radically broaden the scope of experimental research and its contribution to sustainable everyday practices. Pragmatism brings to the fore the need to coordinate multiple practices and understandings of good eating, as these may clash in practice. Through this lens, the value of experimental research lies in revealing frictions that need to be resolved, or tinkered, in practice. Speculative experimentation, in turn, refers to the power of experiments to challenge the experimental setting itself and force thinking about new possibilities and avenues. We investigate the value of all four approaches in relation to our experiments with sustainable eating in the Finnish and Nordic context. Our elaboration justifies the need to broaden the conception of experimental research in order to capture the multiplicity of sustainable eating. Hence, we call for attentive, speculative experimental research aimed not only at testing solutions for sustainable everyday practice, but also at reflecting on the practice of experimentation itself.",
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Attentive, speculative experimental research for sustainability transitions: An exploration in sustainable eating. / Kaljonen, Minna; Peltola, Taru; Salo, Marja; Furman, Eeva.

In: Journal of Cleaner Production, Vol. 206, 01.01.2019, p. 365-373.

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review

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