Transforming carbon consumption patterns of the new middle classes

Event Type
Kick-off workshop

Bonn, 23.11.2017 until 24.11.2017


German Development Institute / Deutsches Institut für Entwicklungspolitik (DIE)

The unprecedented growth of the new middle classes in middle income developing countries implies a strong growth in both consumption and carbon emissions. If the new middle classes mirror the carbon-intensive lifestyles of the industrialized countries, the remaining carbon space to manage climate change will close much more quickly. But who are these new consumers, what do they actually consume in which sectors and why? Mapping actual consumption patterns and trends among the new middle classes in terms of their emission impact is important to understand what moving out of poverty implies.

To design targeted policies and programmes for low-carbon consumption, it is necessary to understand both what drives consumer behaviour at the household level and what impact consumer groups have on policy. Individual economic motivations as well as lifestyle decisions based on “what’s in” among the respective peer group can matter. Middle class-state relations are often ambiguous in middle income countries, varying between close links and dependency due to government-based jobs, for example, and increasing independent civic participation, for instance among young environmental leaders.

This workshop will tackle these questions from various angles. It will explore the role of behavioural insights to change consumer behaviour in middle income countries, comparing and contrasting it with standard policy instruments. Questions of socioeconomics, values, aspirations and lifestyles will be discussed to determine the policy space to act.

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Event information

23.11.2017 until 24.11.2017


Tulpenfeld 6
53113 Bonn