Evaluating the Effectiveness of Policies and Programmes on Education for Sustainable Consumption: A discussion of methodological challenges in investigating policy impacts towards sustainable consumption

The 2nd International Conference of the Partnership for Education and Research about Responsible Living (PERL): Beyond Consumption - Pathways to Responsible Living
19-20 March 2012

This paper provides a discussion of the methodological challenges that are faced in trying to evaluate the effectiveness of Education for Sustainable Consumption (ESC) policies and programmes. Two as-pects of behaviour change are investigated: the driving factors and conditions for behaviour change towards SC and the ways in which governments can influence consumption practices. In regards to how research can investigate ESC policy, consideration is given to how the effectiveness of ESC initiatives can be properly investigated, and also to how research can identify policy opportunities in regards to strengthening ESC implementation.
None of these individual discussions provide an absolute solution to evaluation of the effectiveness of ESC policy, but they do provide substantial insight into how ESC policies can be more effectively developed. The individual discussion on policy research also provide some direct recommendations for improving the government‟s role in ESC implementation.