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Open Access Active Consumership as a Driver towards Sustainability?

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Recently, more and more providers of goods and services have actively involved consumers and users in processes of value creation and innovation. Bottom-up processes of collaborative production of consumer communities have gained public attention. In sustainability research, these phenomena are considered as promising for fostering sustainability in consumption. Active consumer ship, in this sense, may well encourage people to be more creative in finding sustainable solutions for satisfying needs and – even more importantly – help them be more open in embracing the opportunities these solutions can offer. Discussing different kinds of active consumership, the author identifies three new roles for consumers: prosuming, co-innovation and social innovation. She explores their relevance for fostering sustain ability in consumption by means of examples. For instance, prosuming might increase sustainability in consumption if different kinds of motivations are taken into account; co-innovation very often relies on lead users who may help to increase sustainability if they themselves show characteristics of opinion leaders.

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Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: July 1, 2014

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  • GAIA is a peer-reviewed inter- and transdisciplinary journal for scientists and other interested parties concerned with the causes and analyses of environmental and sustainability problems and their solutions.

    Environmental problems cannot be solved by one academic discipline. The complex natures of these problems require cooperation across disciplinary boundaries. Since 1991, GAIA has offered a well-balanced and practice-oriented forum for transdisciplinary research. GAIA offers first-hand information on state of the art environmental research and on current solutions to environmental problems. Well-known editors, advisors, and authors work to ensure the high quality of the contributions found in GAIA and a unique transdisciplinary dialogue – in a comprehensible style.

    GAIA is an ISI-journal, listed in the Science Citation Index Expanded, Social Science Citation Index and in Current Contents/Social and Behavioral Sciences.

    All contributions undergo a double-blind peer review.

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