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Free Content Is there evidence of households making a heat or eat trade off in the UK?

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This paper explores the popular idea of a ‘heat or eat’ dilemma existing for some households. The mixed-methods research finds that there is a relationship between not being able to heat the home and not being able to eat well. However, it appears that households struggle to do either, and there is considerable nuance in household decisions around energy use. Qualitative data analysis indicates the importance of energy billing periods, household composition and social and familial networks in terms of shaping household experiences and responses. The findings challenge the established idea that food and fuel are elastic household expenditures.
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Keywords: destitution; food poverty; fuel poverty; heat or eat

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: 1: University of York, UK 2: University of Sheffield, UK 3: University of Birmingham, UK

Publication date: June 2018

This article was made available online on April 10, 2018 as a Fast Track article with title: "Is there evidence of households making a heat or eat trade off in the UK?".

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