3S Research stands the test of time

Research on local organic food systems by 3S’s Dr Gill Seyfang (Reader in Sustainable Consumption) is a ‘Classic Paper’ in the field of Sustainable Development.

Dr Seyfang’s work is the 5th most-highly cited paper on Sustainable Development that was published in 2006.

This is according to Google Scholar, whose ‘Classic Papers’ highlight the ten most-cited articles that were published ten years earlier.

The paperEcological citizenship and sustainable consumption: Examining local organic food networks’ was published in the Journal of Rural Studies, and has been cited 588 times to date.

The research evaluates a local organic food scheme’s contribution to sustainable consumption. It finds that it makes small but valuable contributions to creating an alternative food system based on stronger sustainability values than the mainstream supermarket supply chains allow.

This work forms the basis of a programme of research on ‘grassroots innovations’, radical community-led initiatives for sustainable development. Dr Seyfang’s research focuses on how to nurture, grow and spread these initiatives, so as to have greater impact on achieving sustainability.

Her more recent work includes a book ‘The New Economics of Sustainable Consumption’ and further research on community currencies and community energy, including these open-access papers:

Making the most of community energies (Environment and Planning A, 2016)

What influences the diffusion of grassroots innovations for sustainability? (Technology Analysis and Strategic Management, 2016)

A grassroots sustainable energy niche? (Environmental Innovation and Societal Transitions, 2014)


Dr Gill Seyfang is a founder member of the Science, Society and Sustainability (3S) Research Group in the School of Environmental Sciences, UEA.

See www.grassrootsinnovations.org for more information on this and other related research.