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Urban Consumption

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Urban Consumption

Edited by:
Peter Newton   Swinburne University of Technology

304 pages, 270 x 210 mm
Publisher: CSIRO Publishing

    Paperback - 2011
ISBN: 9780643096875 - AU $110.00

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Growth in human consumption is the transcending problem of our times. In the short span of 50 years, high income societies have shifted from an era when a 'simple life' was the norm to one where material consumption is pervasive. Consumption has become the engine for post-industrial societies. The liveability of cities in these societies is directly attributable to the consumption of resources – indirectly via their built environments and directly by their residents. This pattern of development is not sustainable. Nor is it equitable.

Urban Consumption is an important book, exploring the prospect for winding back current levels of household consumption in high income societies, and covering such critical areas as energy, water, food, housing and travel.


  • Explores the prospect for winding back current levels of household consumption
  • Covers such critical areas as energy, water, food, housing and travel
  • Represents the results of original research directed towards understanding the determinants of consumption

 Consumption and environmental sustainability
Peter Newton

Consumption in context

Inside looking out: the global politics of Australia's population debates
David Ritter

The Ecological Footprint of consumption: spatial and sectoral context
Thomas Wiedmann, Richard Wood, John Barrett and Manfred Lenzen

Consumption and the environment: impacts from a system perspective
Graham M Turner

The elementary forms of the consumerist life: a sociological perspective
Peter Corrigan

Consumer sentiment and consumption
Chew Lian Chua and Edda Claus

The psychology of consumption
Michael Kyrios

Consuming online in Australia
Scott Ewing

Household consumption in an urban context

Australian household consumption and the slow burn of the environment
Terry Burke and Liss Ralston

Food consumption in Australia
Leonie J Pearson and Liss Ralston

Wasteful consumption
Richard Denniss and David Baker

Sustainable travel: mobility, lifestyle and practice
Stewart Barr and Jan Prillwitz

Consuming the urban environment: a study of the factors that influence resource use in an Australian city
Peter Newton and Denny Meyer

Understanding household attitudes and behaviours towards waste, water and energy conservation
Kelly S Fielding, Winnifred R Louis, Clive Warren and Alice Thompson

Factors in energy and water consumption
Bill Randolph and Patrick Troy

Practices involving energy and water consumption in migrant households
Cecily Maller

Spatial and socioeconomic drivers of direct and indirect household energy consumption in Australia
Dominik Wiedenhofer, Manfred Lenzen and Julia K Steinberger

Who cares? An exploration of attitudes and behaviour towards the conservation of resources
Peter Newton and Denny Meyer


  • Government
  • Industry
  • University students studying sustainability
  • Significant multi-disciplinary interest, including: psychology, marketing and business, sociology, economics, and urban studies

 "The book provides a good overview of the key demographic, economic and socio-cultural issues that have and are currently influencing and shaping the public debate about private household consumption."
Roberto Colanzi, Australian Planner, 2013


 Peter Newton is Research Professor in Sustainable Urbanism at the Institute for Social Research, Swinburne University of Technology, Melbourne. Prior to his move to Swinburne in 2007 he was Chief Research Scientist at CSIRO Sustainable Ecosystems. 

Related Titles
 Global Megatrends    Unnatural Selection   The Gold Coast Transformed    Sustainable Futures    Responding to Climate Change    Living in a Warmer World    Designing to Heal  


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