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Frontpage News 2012 Sustainable consumption


Interdisciplinary research on consumer behaviour

  • A comprehensive social science research project leading the way for ecologically sustainable consumption and production is being carried out in Hungary.

    Thanks to €890,243 from the Norway Grants, an interdisciplinary research project drawing together scholars from fields such as political science, sociology, economics, law and environmental sciences, is now being carried out. The aim of the project is to identify factors that can influence consumption and production patterns so that these can become ecologically sustainable, and to formulate new and efficient policies to this end. Until now, no such research has been carried out in Hungary.

    The project, which is coordinated and led by the Eötvös Loránd University in Budapest, involves several universities, research institutions and associations, including the Corvinus University and the Hungarian Academy of Science, as well as the Norwegian University of Science and Technology (NTNU) in Trondheim, which has extensive experience in the field of environmental and sustainable development research.

    How we produce and consume goods and services have a major impact on the environment. Our consumption patterns are easily taken for granted as part of the everyday and reproduced, yet in doing so we risk depleting resources for future generations. More research is needed to find out how we can formulate efficient policies aimed at influencing consumer behaviour and stimulating sustainable production of goods and services.

    Opening seminar in Budapest
    The opening seminar of the project was held in Budapest on September 24. In her opening address, Norway's ambassador to Hungary Siri Ellen Sletner said she was happy that the EEA and Norway Grants contribute to research cooperation between Norway and the beneficiary states, especially within common concerns and responsibilities such as sustainable development.

    "The behaviour of designers, producers and consumers are interlinked and affect each other in a far-reaching way," the ambassador said, emphasising that "the challenge is to manage these dependencies without causing harm to the environment." The ambassador welcomed the project and underlined the need of taking a comprehensive and holistic perspective in formulating sound environmental policies, as "production and consumption are closely linked, and one cannot escape the fact that production of goods and services has environmental impacts from beginning to end."

    Photo Credit: Royal Norwegian Embassy, Budapest

  • Country:


    Project title:

    Sustainable consumption, production and communication

    Case number:


    Priority sector:

    Academic research


    € 890,243



    Type & project assistance:

    Individual Project

    Project promoter:

    Eötvös Loránd University

    Type of institution:

    Education/research institution

    Project duration:

    28 months

    Project cost:

    € 1,048,825

    Grant rate:


    Grant from:

    Norway Grants

    Grant agreement date:

    27 April 2009

    The purpose of the Project is to conduct research on consumption and production habits, and strengthen the environmental policy integration (EPI) in Hungary, with the overall objective to move consumption, production and service habits in Hungary in the direction of sustainability. Reference is made to the application dated 8 November 2007 and any subsequent correspondence with the Focal Point.

    The completed Project shall include the following activities and results:

    - Analysis of factors that define and influence consumer habits (focusing on sustainable development)

    - Analysis of factors that influence production and distribution (focusing on sustainable development)

    - Development of production and distribution models (focusing on sustainable development)

    - Consumer awareness raising through education and communication (focusing on sustainable development)

    - Development of policy recommendations (focusing on sustainable development)

    - Project management, communication and publicity

    The Project Promoter is the Budapest Corvinus University. Subject to national law, the Project shall be implemented in partnership with the following partners: Eötvös Loránd University, Hungarian Academy of Science-Sociology Research Institute, Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Association of Conscious Consumers, Environmental Management and Landscape Rehabilitation Public Utility Company of Bodrogkoz (Bokartisz) and Society for our Natural and Cultural Heritage (Vedegylet)

    The Focal Point shall ensure that the Project Promoter provides at least 15,12% of the total eligible project costs.