Environment 2.0 the Ninth Biennial Conference on Environmental Psychology

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Nov 14, 2013 (4 years and 8 months ago)


Environment 2.0

the Ninth Biennial Conference on Environmental

Eindhoven University of Technology, The Netherlands, 26
28 September 2011

Clare Littleford, Loughborough University

The C

Environment 2.0 was the ninth biennial conference organised by the Environmental Psychology
division of the German Association of Psychology. They took the decision

years ago to turn the
conference into an international, E
language conference,
and since then it has become the major
European conference on environmental psychology. This year
the conference took place at Eindhoven
University of Technology in the Netherlands. O
ver 350 delegates attended from all over the world

(but predominantly fro
m across Europe)
, with
4 keynote speakers,
almost 200 oral p
resentations and a
further 67 poster presentations
over the 3 days

The oral presentations were grouped into 40 themed
sessions, with 5 sessions running simultaneously at any one time. Additionall
delegates came
together for the keynote speeches and for poster spotlight presentations.

Conference themes and keynote speakers

he conference covered many aspects of environmental psychology, with dominant topics

energy use behaviour, travel behaviour, behaviour change interventions, and
relationships with
Different methodological and theoretical elements from the environmental psychology discipline
discussed in detail
, particularly the roles of norms
, values and knowledge in individual behaviour
There were a number of symposia during the conference, including ones looking at public perceptions
of and engagement with climate change, the role of values in environmental behaviour, place
personality inte
ractions, satisfaction with different travel modes, and restoration in virtual nature.
special conference theme of Environment 2.0, looking at environmental psychology’s status with
regards to technological innovations, also included consideration of t
he impact and implications of
technologies such as mobile phones, the internet and virtual reality.

There were four keynote speakers

Robert Cialdini, Professor Emeritus of Psychology and Marketing, Arizona State University,
who spoke about the power of

social norms in environmental behaviour change

Wijnand IJsselstein, Associate Professor of Human
Technology Interaction at Eindhoven
University of Technology, who spoke about media environments as research objects and


Eus van Someren, Professor of I
Neurophysiology at VU University Amsterdam,
who spoke about rhythms in light and temperature affecting sleep and performance

Sebastian Bamberg, Professor of Social Psychology and Quantitative Research Methods at
the University of Applied Science
, Bielefeld, Germany, who spoke about processes of
voluntary behavioural change

Sessions I attended

In addition to the keynote speakers, poster spotlight sessions and the session I presented in, I attended

sessions on the following themes


distance and sustainability

Roles of values in environmental behaviour

The role of knowledge in behavioural change

Environmental behaviour and motivation

Barriers to behavioural change

Norms and sustainable behaviour

In these sessions I met seven researchers based at other universities who, like me, are carrying out
research into energy use by individuals in office settings. I was able to speak to each of them about
connections between our research and to exchange cont
act details.

My own presentation

My presentation,
titled ‘The energy consumption behaviour of individual office workers: influences of
context, control and norms’, was part of a session titled ‘Office environments: Energy consumption
and certification’.

Originally there were to be four presentations in this session, but one person
withdrew due to illness. The other two presentations given in this session were:

The influence of objective and perceived room climate control on user satisfaction in the
xt of reduced energy consumption in office buildings and schools

Does building energy standard make a difference? Results from post occupancy evaluation in
office buildings in Germany

As someone had withdrawn at the last minute, we had longer to give our
presentations than expected

I had prepared a 12 minute talk but actually spoke for just under 20 minutes, with tim
e for questions
afterwards. I was asked three or four questions, focusing on the kinds of measurements I was taking
and possible reasons for

some of the preliminary results I had presented from my PhD study. I was
also able to discuss links in research and possible future conferences to attend with the other
presenters and with other people who had attended the session.

Benefits of having a

Attending the conference and giving the presentation had a number of benefits for me:

Experience of presenting at a conference

seeing how other people structured their talks and
dealt with questions, and then having the opportunity to give my o
wn talk and answer
questions myself, was an invaluable experience that will give me greater insight into the
process and confidence for future presentations.

Identifying and understanding some of the current debates in environmental psychology,

individual energy use,

which will be particularly important when I come to writing up
my thesis and presenting my own research in the context of those debates.

Experience of presenting to an international audience in the discipline of environmental

as Loughborough doesn’t have a psychology department and I do not have a
specialist background in this discipline, it was very useful to have gained feedback on my
own research and approach from people who do have this background. This feedback came
the form of reviewers’ comments on my presentation proposal, one
one discussions with
other researchers met during the conference, and the questions and subsequent discussions
held with people who attended or presented in the session where I presente

Meeting a number of people carrying out research in a similar area to me

very little has
been published on individual energy consumption behaviour in office buildings, and meeting
other people working in this area has enabled me to identify where ther
e are connections
between our work, where my work is unique, and some issues and perspectives that I hadn’t
considered in detail that can help to shape the way my research develops from now on.

Making connections with high
profile researchers in my area

already, I have been invited to
submit an abstract for a symposium in this area at another international conference next
. This is a great opportunity that has come directly from having presented at this
conference, and that
, if I am accepted,

will a
llow me to present my final PhD results to a

ttending the conference has been hugely beneficial to me, and something I would not have been able
to do without the support of the MEGS Travel Bursary

so thank you very muc
h for giving me this