July 4, 2015

SCORAI Israel

Hebrew version

SCORAI Israel Vision Statement

SCORAI Israel is a network of researchers and stakeholders who are interested in the interface between material consumption, technological and cultural transformations, and human wellbeing. Our goal is to advance scientific research and to promote public discussion of the characteristics and consequences of consumer society, taking center stage in our lives today.

We strive to bring together researchers, decision makers, practitioners, and other stakeholders, who wish to understand the forces that drive consumer economy in technologically advanced societies; to propose and analyze post-consumptive alternatives to current economic systems, lifestyles and social institutions; and to coordinate knowledge that will benefit grassroots organizations, social movements, and social policy.

Relevant topics for SCORAI Israel include, for example: ethical consumption, counter-culture practices, organizational and institutional aspects of consumer culture, prosumption, environmental politics, sustainable consumption, urban sustainability, local trade and fair trade, wellbeing in the age of consumer culture, alternative forms of trade and consumption, measures of consumption, and more.

On December 17, 2015 we held an inaugural mini-conference hosted by Bar-Ilan University. The program included two main speakers. Galit Cohen from the Ministry of Environmental Protection spoke about reasons for governmental engagement with issues of consumption and consumer culture. She described actions taken by the ministry to shape patterns of production and consumption and to improve the quality of life of Israelis, emphasizing new measures of quality of life developed in cooperation with the OECD. These measures will be introduced in a special monograph in January 2016. Galit Cohen also described the various tools the ministry uses to both reduce the use of natural resources and change consumption habits. These tools include economic, regulatory, information-related, and behavioral economics. Vered Blass from Tel Aviv University brought the perspective of industrial ecology in analyzing the relationship between different phases in the processes of production and consumption, integrative solutions to primary and secondary life cycles of products, and the balance between reducing resource use and environmental impacts on the one hand and preserving economic development on the other. Valerie Brachya from the Jerusalem Institute for the study of Israel and David Katz from the University of Haifa served as discussants to the two main talks and offered additional insights on social, economic, and environmental sustainability. Finally, we held an open discussion with the audience on future activities of SCORAI-Israel.

SCORAI Israel cooperates with SCORAI North America, see here http://scorai.org. For more information please email Tally Katz-Gerro at tkatz@soc.haifa.ac.il. To subscribe to a listserv please visit this page:

http://hevra.haifa.ac.il/cgi-bin/mailman/listinfo/scorai-israel

NETWORK COORDINATORS

Tally Katz-Gerro, Department of Sociology, University of Haifa

Orit Rotem, Department of Geography and Environment, Bar Ilan University

NETWORK STEERING COMMITTEE

Valerie Brachya, The Jerusalem Institute for Israel Studies

Rotem Shamay, Ministry of Environmental Protection

Gili Baruch, Head of the sustainable local economic development project at Shatil

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