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Environmental Psychology

The research group Environmental Psychology Unit (EPU), at the Department of Psychology, gathers researches working with research and teaching within the area. The research group also cooperates with other departments and disciplines in interdisciplinary research projects. Environmental Psychology belongs to the branch of psychology known as Social Psychology.

The encounter between people and the environment

Environmental psychology investigates how people affect the environment but also how the physical surroundings affect people. It is a broad area that can be seen for different angles.

The starting-point for EPU´s research is societal issues that relate to environmental problems. This can for example include resource management, energy consumption, pro-environmental consumer behavior, and acceptance of pro-environmental policies.

EPU attend these issues for the perspective of psychological research, that is, our main focus is to understand and change human behavior.

More specifically, our research interest includes cognitive processes, social dilemmas, values, norms and, attitudes, and how these topics affect decisions and behaviors in an environmental context.

The benefits of environmental psychology

Environmental psychology is interested in the interaction between people and the environment. The research focuses on psychological processes related to how people affect their environment, and also how the environment affects people. Environmental psychology can examine for example how resource usage and sustainability within consumption, transportation or policy making is related to the well-being of the humans, animals and the environment.

The role of environmental psychology

Environmental psychology is an application of psychological theory in order to study possibilities and hindrances for sustainable development. Our research is intended to generate means for promoting sustainable development.

The researchers in EPU are interested in a variety of topics, for example how values influence, norms and attitudes influence decision-making. The research is mostly applied, that is, makes use of existing psychological knowledge in order to solve a variety of, or a specific environmental problem. However, basic research is sometimes needed; therefore topics concerning basic psychological questions are also examined.

Application of environmental psychology

Environmental psychological research can be applied in a variety of areas. For example in order to influence consumers into more sustainable consumption, develop more effective pro-environmental information, create policies for sustainable business, provide policymakers with tool for more effective decision making, or provide designers with tool in their work of creating pro-environmental environments.

If you are interested in more detailed documents concerning environmental psychological research, we are providing articles from the members of EPU in publications <länk>. Moreover, the psychological department also provides education in environmental psychology.

 

Cooperation

The University has a strong tradition being involved in the community and works closely with several organizations outside the academic world. One such partner is the media. Through contact with the media we are able to inform the public about our research findings.

The goal of our research is always that it will ultimately be useful to the public. We want our research will make society better equipped to deal with environmental problems.