Professor Elizabeth Shove


Research Interests

See my personal web page for recent publications and details of past and present projects.

I came to Lancaster in 1995 as deputy director of the Centre for the Study of Environmental Change and was director of the Centre for Science Studies for a couple of years before joining the Sociology Department in 2000. My current research interests have to do with the relation between consumption, everyday practice and ordinary technology. I am co-director of DEMAND, an EPSRC/ESRC funded research centre on the Dynamics of Energy, Mobility and Demand. DEMAND starts in May 2013 and runs for 5 years.

Recent books

Hui, A. Shove, E. and Schatzki, T. (Eds) (2016) The Nexus of Practices: Connections, constellations, practitioners, London: Routledge.

Shove, E. and Spurling, N. (Eds) (2013) Sustainable Practices: Social theory and climate change, London: Routledge.

Recent research funding

Research Councils UK, Electricity de France (R&D), International Energy Agency and Transport for London £7.1 million in total (£4.95 million from RCUK/EDF, £2.15 million contribution in kind/institutional support), for the DEMAND Research Centre of which I am the PI.

Editorial Board Memberships and recent professional activity

Building Research and Information, 2014-Energy research and social science, 2013-2015 Invited to give evidence in person: House of Lords Design Commission: Built environment.2014- Advisory board - AHRC ‘Material Cultures of Energy’ led by Frank Trentmann.2013- Advisory board, Centre for Energy Epidemiology, UCL, London.2011-16 Initiator and Convenor of the British Sociological Association Climate Change Study group (200+ members)

A selection of keynote lectures

Shove, E. (2014) ‘Energy and society: resources and practices’, opening keynote lecture, Energy and Society conference, Krakow, Poland, June 2014.

Shove, E. (2015) ‘What is energy for: understanding consumption, efficiency and demand’ opening keynote lecture of the International Energy Agency Energy Efficiency and Behaviour programme. March 2015.

Shove, E. (2015) ‘The dynamics of energy, mobility and demand: What is energy used for and how does this change’, Opening keynote presentation: 3rd International conference on sustainable thermal energy management, Newcastle. July 2015.

Shove, E. (2016) ‘The concept of comfort in a changing climate’ the Windsor conference on thermal comfort, after dinner keynote lecture. April 2016.

Shove, E. (2016), ‘Beyond Efficiency’, GRETs public lecture, Fondation Maison Sciences des de l’Homme, Paris, France. June 2016.

Shove, E. (2015) ‘Social practice theory and energy consumption: accidental and invisible energy policy’ opening keynote presentation, Interpretive Policy Analysis conference, Hull July 2016.

Shove, E. (2016) ‘Infrastructures and Practices’ University of Kentucky, Fall Invited Distinguished Professor Lecture on Social Theory. September 2016.

Shove, E. (2016) ‘Sustainable consumption and practice theory: a new paradigm’ invited public lecture, NUMIES, Santiago, Chile. November 2016.

Previous research includes:

Transitions in Practice - an ESRC funded Climate Change Leadership Fellowship that ran from 2008-2012. Follow the link for more details, including the film of the extraordinary lecture on how the social sciences can help climate change policy. The Dynamics of Social Practice (Sage 2012) was partly based on this work.

Sustainable Practices Research group - I am on the management team of the SPRG (2010-2013), and involved with three projects in the group: keeping cool,interaction and engagement, and theoretical development and integration.

The Design of Everyday Life (Berg2007) is based on 'Designing and Consuming: objects, practices and processes'. This project, undertaken with Matt Watson at Durham University and Jack Ingram at Birmingham Institute of Art and Design, exploits the potential for theoretical development at the interface of science and technology studies, design and the sociology of consumption. This projectwas funded by the ESRC's Cultures of Consumption programme.

The choreography of everyday life - a collaborative project with Mika Pantzar at the National Consumer Research Centre, Helsinki, Finland. We have written about a range of different topics - Nordic Walking, Kitchen rationalisation, Floorball, Plastic, Heart Rate Meters and more. The link will take you to a series of web pages outlining some of our ideas, many of which feature in the Dynamics of Social Practice (2012).

Interactive Agenda Setting in the Social Sciences: A programme of six research workshops on non-academic concerns and academic research agendas was funded by the ESRC. The web site includes background papers and reports on interactive agenda setting and: disciplines, centres, interdisciplinarity and research programmes.

Traces of Water, with Will Medd, was funded by the UK Water Industry Research Association. This project brings sociological ideas about practice and technology to bear on domestic water consumption.The web site includes details of a programme of research workshops.

Manufacturing Leisure (2005), an electronic book, edited with Mika Pantzar, which examines innovations in fun. Together, the chapters show how consumers and producers are continuously and actively involved in integrating, inventing and reproducing specific combinations of ideologies, materials and forms of competence of which leisure practices are formed.

Future Comforts, with Heather Chappells, examined future expectations of comfort and the indoor environment (funded by the ESRC's Environment and Behaviour Programme.). The future comforts web site includes a selection of papers and a bibliography of social scientific work on thermal comfort.

Sustainable Domestic Technologies with Alan Warde and Dale Southerton at Manchester University, is about the design and use of kitchens and bathrooms and is funded by the ESRC's Sustainable Technologies Programme.

Consumption, Everyday Life and Sustainability a five-year programme of workshops, exchanges and summer schools onconsumption, everyday life and sustainability" (funded by the European Science Foundation).

Selected Publications Show all 104 publications

The Dynamics of Social Practice: Everyday life and how it changes
Shove, E., Pantzar, M., Watson, M. 22/05/2012 London : Sage. 191 p. ISBN: 9780857020437.