Environmental aspects of leisure time consumption; theoretical development, empirical analysis and normative discussion

The objectives of this project are multidimensional. We want to take part in the theoretical discussion about the development of the modern or post-modern leisure time society. We will focus on the environmental impact of consumption, linked to the relationship between work and leisure time.

At the empirical level we want to measure the environmental impact of various parts of leisure time consumption. What categories are the most important when it comes to relative and total environmental impact, and what are the main inputs? Secondly we want to study to what degree, and in what ways Norwegian and Nordic consumers have a different conscious relationship to their leisure time and holiday consumption than to their everyday life consumption.

The routinised consumption plays an important part in the production and reproduction in societies, but to what degree is this normative contribution challenged by the increase in leisure time consumption and new normative standards? This brings us to the normative level. To what degree is leisure time consumption in accordance with the goal of sustainable development? Will more leisure time create more sustainability? How is it possible to move the leisure time consumption in a more environmental friendly direction? Based upon the empirical results, is it possible to identify elements in the leisure time consumption that have less environmental impact than other sectors? How is it possible to stimulate a sustainable development within leisure time consumption? We will here use the concept “situations of opportunities” to discuss the possibilities to make leisure time consumption more sustainable.

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