Nimi Op Opiskelumuoto Aika Paikkakunta Järjestäjä
Kulutusyhteiskunnan sosiotekninen (uudelleen) rakentuminen 5 Cr Luentokurssi 13.1.2020 - 24.2.2020
Nimi Op Opiskelumuoto Aika Paikkakunta Järjestäjä
Kulutusyhteiskunnan sosiotekninen (uudelleen) rakentuminen 5 Cr Luentokurssi 14.1.2019 - 25.2.2019
Kulutusyhteiskunnan sosiotekninen (uudelleen) rakentuminen 5 Cr Luentokurssi 8.1.2018 - 26.2.2018


Master’s students in Social Sciences

Master’s students in Environmental Change and Global Sustainability

Edeltävät opinnot tai edeltävä osaaminen

Students should have a good basic knowledge (corresponding to Bachelor’s degree) in an appropriate subject (social sciences, environmental sciences, economics, consumer studies). It is also helpful if students have completed the methodological courses in their Master’s subject.


Students are able to analyse consumption patterns in a broader socio-technical context. They are familiar with the main research traditions in science and technology studies that are relevant to sustainable consumption. They are able to use historical, statistical and media data to investigate the historical evolution of consumption and production patterns and conceptualize processes of socio-technical change. Students have experience of collaboratively investigating major ongoing efforts to change the course of unsustainable consumption patterns. They have the ability to develop researchable problems, compile answers to these problems, critically evaluate their own and others’ research findings, and identify relevant implications for policy and practice.


3rd period, recommended to be completed in 2nd year of Master’s studies


• Theoretical frameworks of sociotechnical change
• Empirical findings concerning the historical evolution of main consumption domains (built environment, mobility, food, urban infrastructures) and their sustainability implications
• Application of theoretical frameworks to practical present-day problems
• Analysis of forces of stability and change in successful and unsuccessful attempts toward sustainability


Lectures and seminar sessions (15 h), readings (40 h), groupwork assignment: analysis of system evolution and reform efforts in a selected field (individual contributions and a group presentation) (80 h).

Alternative way to complete the course: https://moodle.helsinki.fi/course/view.php?id=26236. If you want to complete the course in this alternative way, please contact Senja Laakso (senja.laakso@helsinki.fi)!


Markard, J., Raven, R., & Truffer, B. (2012). Sustainability transitions: An emerging field of research and its prospects. Research Policy, 41(6), 955–967. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.respol.2012.02.013

Geels, F. W. (2018). Low-carbon transition via system reconfiguration? A socio-technical whole system analysis of passenger mobility in Great Britain (1990–2016). Energy Research & Social Science, 46, 86–102. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.erss.2018.07.008

Shove, E., & Walker, G. (2010). Governing transitions in the sustainability of everyday life. Research Policy, 39(4), 471–476. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.respol.2010.01.019

Verbong, G. P. J., & Geels, F. W. (2010). Exploring sustainability transitions in the electricity sector with socio-technical pathways. Technological Forecasting and Social Change, 77(8), 1214–1221. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.techfore.2010.04.008

Kaljonen, M., Peltola, T., Salo, M., & Furman, E. (2019). Attentive, speculative experimental research for sustainability transitions: An exploration in sustainable eating. Journal of Cleaner Production, 206, 365–373. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jclepro.2018.09.206

Ballon, P. and Schuurman, D. 2015. Living labs: concepts, tools and cases. info, 17, 4. https://doi.org/10.1108/info-04-2015-0024

Heiskanen, E., Jalas, M., Rinkinen, J., & Tainio, P. (2015). The local community as a “low-carbon lab”: Promises and perils. Environmental Innovation and Societal Transitions, 14, 149–164. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.eist.2014.08.001

Ho K., & Hanssens, D. M. (2016). Advertising and Word-of-Mouth Effects on Pre- Launch Consumer Interest and Initial Sales of Experience Products. Journal of Interactive Marketing, 37(2), 57–74. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.intmar.2016.08.001

Arviointimenetelmät ja -kriteerit

Graded on a scale of 0-5. Attendance in class (20%), contribution in group report (40%) and group assignment (40%). Detailed criteria available on the course Moodle page.

Yhteydet muihin opintojaksoihin

In the Social Science Master’s program, this course is part of the Consumer Studies orientation (opintosuunta). In the Environmental Change and Global Sustainability Master’s program, this course is part of the Consumer Citizens and Sustainability Transitions course package. In these two packages, it can be replaced with the course Sustainable culinary cultures from the Food and Sustainability program.

This course can also be included in the Science and Technology Studies orientation (opintosuunta) in the Social Science Master’s program.


This course is part of a multilingual program: papers and assignments can be written and presented in English, Finnish or Swedish.