Vision and Mission of the Consumption and Healthy Lifestyles group

Vision and Mission

Many of today’s major issues in health and sustainability are inevitably associated with human conduct. To address these societal challenges, changes in consumption patterns and lifestyles are crucial. In order to develop effective solutions, a fundamental understanding of the processes driving consumption patterns and lifestyles is needed. The chair group Consumption and Healthy Lifestyles aims to advance our conceptual understanding of healthy and sustainable consumption and lifestyles, and to exploit these theoretical notions for the design, evaluation and implementation of novel interventions to enable healthy and sustainable consumption patterns and lifestyles.

The chair group adopts a socio-ecological perspective embracing the view that healthy and sustainability consumption patterns and lifestyles are not merely a matter of individual decision-making, but should be understood as the result of processes interacting at the individual, interpersonal, community, institutional, and policy level. Acknowledging the different socio-ecological levels at play in driving consumption goes hand in hand with acknowledging that there is no single discipline that can fully account for variation in consumption and healthy lifestyles. The interdisciplinary stake on consumption and healthy lifestyles is at the core of the chair group and includes perspectives from sociology, psychology, geography, behavioural epidemiology & health sciences. Equality and diversity are central values addressed through specific attention to behaviours of vulnerable groups and the practices of social groups (e.g., youth, elderly, financially deprived, low educated, patients).

The chair group adopts a multi-method research approach including quantitative and qualitative research methods, ranging from experimental studies to participatory research. The interdisciplinary approach to consumption and healthy lifestyles warrant innovations in research methodology. In doing so, we are inspired by novel approaches in design thinking, implementation science, data science and alternative trials (e.g., n = 1 designs, micro-randomized and adaptive trials).