An infrastructural perspective on sustainable consumption - Activating and obligating sustainable consumption through infrastructures

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleScientificpeer-review


Research units

  • University of Gothenburg


This article presents an infrastructural perspective on sustainable consumption as supporting the replacement of unsustainable products and services with sustainable alternatives. By delineating how interconnected institutional and material infrastructures can shape the sustainability of products and services integral to social practice we show how dominant and normalized use of such products and services can be changed. We draw on a case of the consumption of antifouling (AF) products and services for leisure boats in a Swedish boat club. Our analysis is based on key insights from three theoretical infrastructural perspectives, the economic perspective, the socio-material perspective and a socio-technical perspective. Thus our results show that infrastructures can perform sustainable purchase and use of products and services if (1) material and institutional infrastructures mutually reinforce such purchase and use, (2) that the infrastructural set-up provides both activating and obligating potentials and (3) that sustainable alternatives are made integral to social practice through making them accessible and convenient while penalizing unsustainable product and service alternatives.


Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Cleaner Production
Publication statusPublished - 2020
MoE publication typeA1 Journal article-refereed

ID: 38547527