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Research interests

Sam Hampton is an interdisciplinary researcher whose work focuses on energy and climate change.

His research examines the ways in which environmental impact relates to everyday life. It begins with the idea that energy and resource consumption are bound up in everyday practices such as travelling to work, cooking and eating, and achieving comfort. This perspective tells us that policies designed to reduce environmental impact require an understanding of how and why social norms and behaviours become established. For instance, the steady increase in 'normal' indoor temperatures over the last 50 years, the transition from bathing to showering, or the proliferation of plastics in food production and consumption.

Sam has applied these ideas to the practices of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), and the policies developed to reduce their energy consumption. These policies include government funded incentives such as free expert advice and grants for energy efficiency measures. As policy instruments, these are intensive and expensive, and he has worked with business support organisations to explore how to make face-to-face advice more effective and long-lasting.

Sam has worked on several research projects focusing on energy and transport decarbonisation, including electric vehicle charging infrastructure and smart heat pumps. He led a project called ‘Pathways to a Zero Carbon Oxfordshire’, and is working with Local Authorities to implement the changes needed to eradicate fossil fuels from the economy.

Sam joined the University of Bath in 2021 to work on a project called ‘Accelerating Carbon Capability for an Equitable, Sustainable Society (ACCESS). Drawing on different theoretical and disciplinary traditions, this project seeks to understand what it will take for the diverse UK population to become more ‘carbon capable’. How can low carbon lifestyles be made fulfilling, desirable, affordable, and accessible to all?

Education/Academic qualification

Environmental Geography, Doctor of Social Science, University of Oxford

1 Oct 201530 Sep 2018

Award Date: 1 Oct 2018

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