Making Sustainable Lifestyles the Norm with the Lifestyle Test

Europeans are increasingly paying attention to sustainability and its integration into their lifestyles. However, it happens all too often that people are not fully aware of or underestimate the actual impact of their individual action. In other cases, it is not clear what is actually possible within a given context or how to get started.

The PSLifestyle project has been running since 2021 with aim of increasing citizen participation in discussions about sustainability and positioning them as an important stakeholder for the co-creation of feasible, transparent and credible solutions. The project has developed and launched the Lifestyle Test, a carbon footprint calculator in the form of a free web app that supports people to increase their awareness of the impact that their daily actions have on the environment.

Through a quick and simple test, they can create an initial overview. As a second step, they are provided with inspiration on how to reduce their footprint through tailored tips and actions on lifestyle choices available in their given contect. Finally, the Lifestyle Test supports them in keeping track of their progress (implementation of the tips and reduction of the carbon footprint).

Beyond individual engagement, the results and data collected from the test will be utilised (anonymously) to provide more insights to decision makers (e.g., business, policy) on how to advance and mainstream sustainable lifestyles. The Lifestyle Test is currently available in 8 European countries: Estonia, Finland, Germany, Greece, Italy, Portugal, Slovenia and Turkey.

Given the potential of the Lifestyle Test, the project is considering to expand its presence in other countries beyond the current ones. The scope of the Lifestyle Test can also be narrowed to fit the needs of companies, municipalities or organisations, supporting specific groups and audiences (e.g., inhabitants of a city, customers of a company, students of a university and similar) to adopt more sustainable lifestyles. The project team is open to collaboration ideas on how to further expand and develop the Lifestyle Test.

A unique feature of the Lifestyle Test is that it has been co-created with European residents from the 8 project countries in a series of Living Labs workshops. Hence, the questions, actions, features, and functions oft he test are based on their feedback and reflect their local realities, wants, and wishes.

The collected learnings from the process of designing and implementing the Lifestyle test so far have been collected in a report. In addition to Lifestyle Test insights, the report brings together additional insights about the sentiments of European’s with regard to sustainable lifestyles, including enabling and inhibiting factors. Finally the report collects procedural learnings regarding the implementation of consumer engagement activities through citizen science living labs as a method. You can download the report here.

If you would like to learn more about the Lifestyle Test or have ideas for its further expansion, please reach out to Arlind Xhelili.