Sufficiency-Promoting Marketing to Strengthen Sustainable Consumption Behaviour

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Through their product and service offer companies influence what we consume. In the light of the unresolved challenges of sustainability and the limitations of efficiency and consistency strategies, there is a growing recognition that sufficient lifestyles and consumption patterns are unavoidable. Until now, however, it is mainly independent consumer policy institutes and environmental organizations, which are involved in raising awareness and imparting information about sufficient consumption. The debate in academia as well as in practice about the role of businesses in this context is still in its initial stages.

Sustainability and Marketing

The central questions of this dissertation project are how companies can support such ways of consumption, which focus on moderation and reduction as part of their marketing strategies and what opportunities for marketing that promotes sufficiency arise in the context of digitalization. Digitalization facilitates a greater orientation to individual customer requirements (big data, mass customization) and the reshaping of customer interfaces (crowdsourcing, open innovation). At the same time, these very improvements are associated with the risks of generating rebound effects, thereby countering sufficiency. In two empirical phases qualitative and quantitative social research methods are applied and workshops with companies are carried out.

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Maike Gossen

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