Worshop 1

Firms’ policies, households’ residential practices and energy transition 

At both national and local levels, public authority action attempts to encourage households and firms to modify their lifestyles and modes of production and adopt more economical and efficient energy behaviours. However, the behaviours of both firms and households are often governed by constraints and strategies that are incompatible with the goals pursued by public action. This workshop will therefore attempt to investigate firms’ policies and the residential practices of households in order to gauge the manner of involvement of these two energy consuming groups and the extent to which they adapt to current changes in advance. This workshop is also interested in the methodologies used to measure and analyze the policies of firms and residential practices, and estimate the stakes and impacts in terms of energy consumption and the environment.

How do firms perceive the measures in question and, more generally, what view do they take of these energy-related and environmental issues? Are they a primary or secondary concern? What are the factors that encourage or work against the implementation of environmental and energy policies within firms? What forms do such policies take? What solutions do firms adopt? Are we witnessing mere “greenwashing” or a profound change in firms’ policies? Do all firms have the capacity to be able to take on board these energy and environmental issues? Is there not a danger that we will have two-speed adaptation, where some firms are able to adapt to the energy transition and others not? Lastly, is it possible that the importance firms give to these energy and environmental issues may have a spatial impact, for example by modifying firms’ locational criteria?

As far as households are concerned, the public authorities seem to focus mainly on changing housing behaviours. A considerable body of recent research indicates not only that households are becoming increasingly aware of energy issues, but also reveals strategies and constraints that mean households diverge from the residential and family behaviours desired by the public authorities. Taking this as a starting point, the conference will set out to improve our understanding of these issues from the bottom up, considering residential practices from the standpoint of location and the relationship with both work and housing. The aim is to situate energy issues within a set of social strategies, practices and constraints, focusing particularly on the lower middle and working classes. The issues of work and housing are not confined to the household, but extend to the members of the kinship network. We know how much residential choices and careers owe to the family network, which can be called on as much for social and economic capital as for rootedness. With regard to energy issues what role is played by socialization? To what extent does the family influence the choice of a residential location which is reasonable or not in energy terms, or the improvements which may be undertaken to improve the energy efficiency of a dwelling? How do workers and their kinship networks cope with energy costs? What importance is given to travel in the context of residential strategies, and what are the spatial impacts of household practices and decisions? For example, are there any signs that the “preference” for suburban areas is being questioned?

Online user: 1 RSS Feed