Our PSLifestyle Project Holds First Living Labs in Wuppertal and 7 Other European Pilot Cities

More plant-based food, cycling rather than driving, less air travel – the standard approaches for more sustainable everyday behaviours are familiar to many of us. But which actions really help to reduce our individual environmental footprint and how can we further align those to our diverse lifestyles. Moreover, how can we reconcile the pursuit of greater personal well-being with that of the planet?

As part of the PSLifestyle Living Labs, citizens of 8 European countries (Portugal, Finland, Estonia, Germany, Slovenia, Italy, Greece and Turkey) have taken the first supportive steps to develop the PSL tool – a consumption-based carbon footprint calculator that helps us understand our ecological footprint, create a personal action plan to reduce it, and realise our ambitions to live well within ecological limits.

The CSCP is responsible for coordinating the labs throughout the 8 countries, while running those in Wuppertal, Germany.

For the participants (a group of local citizens), the journey kicked off with an introduction to the concept of sustainable lifestyles and its application to their daily lives. The focus areas of the project, housing, mobility, food and general consumption, helped to make the concept more tangible. In addition, the participants exchanged views on their role as individuals vis-à-vis other stakeholders in order to drive the share of sustainable lifestyles.

Availability of and accessibility to more sustainable options, their slightly more expensive nature compared to the unsustainable counterparts and/or preference to consume certain products because of sensory appeals (such as taste of food products) are some of challenges to adopting more sustainable consumption patterns, according to lab participants.

“A good balance between individual lifestyle behaviour changes and incentives from key actors to initiate and/or maintain such changes is seen as the perfect combination towards ensuring that everyone does their part in the quest towards more sustainable lifestyles”, noted one of the lab participants.

The participants had the opportunity to test the PSL tool and work with it directly. After an initial calculation of their personal carbon footprint, they reflected on their experiences with the PSL tool, the results, and exchanged views on the lifestyle test questions and how they can be further improved to adapt them to their local realities.

“It was fun to complete the test and helpful to see which areas had the greatest impact”, noted participants, while others added: “Reaching the 1,5-degree target seems urgent, however, it requires substantial lifestyle changes. This is worrisome!”.

The output of these first two meetings in all cities across Europe will now be used to further improve the PSL tool.

Are you located in any of these countries and would like to be part of co-designing the PSL tool? At least four more lab meetings in each of these countries are upcoming between September 2022 and March 2023. In these meetings you will have the opportunity to co-design solutions and everyday actions that hold potential for making our lifestyles more sustainable as well as discuss pathways that could accelerate their wider roll out and make the visions of good life within planetary boundaries a reality! Join us by registering here!

The PSLifestyle Living Labs are part of the EU funded project PSLifestyle – “Co-creating a positive and sustainable lifestyle tool with and for European citizens”.  The CSCP is responsible for coordinating the labs throughout the 8 countries, while running one in Wuppertal, Germany. There are 16 European partners in total delivering the project.

For further questions, please contact Arlind Xhelili.