© 2016

An Ethnography of Household Energy Demand in the UK

Everyday Temporalities of Digital Media Usage


Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xiii
  2. Roxana Moroşanu
    Pages 73-86
  3. Roxana Moroşanu
    Pages 87-110
  4. Roxana Moroşanu
    Pages 111-138
  5. Back Matter
    Pages 195-199

About this book


This book challenges the ways we think about human agency by looking at the creativity, ethics, and capacities for social transformation that are embedded in simple actions of “doing”. Stemming from ethnographic research with families in the United Kingdom as part of a wider interdisciplinary project looking at domestic energy demand, this book probes some mundane approaches to time—such as spontaneity, anticipation, and “family time”—and the ways in which they extend ethical imaginations, create new forms of sociality, and engender human agency.


Energy Sustainability Applied anthropology Visual ethnography Time anthropology climate change ethnography social science

Authors and affiliations

  1. 1.Loughborough UniversityLoughboroughUK

About the authors

Roxana Moroşanu Firth is a social anthropologist working in the fields of computing, sustainability and innovation. She is a Research Associate at the Engineering Design Centre, University of Cambridge, UK, and Research Fellow at the Centre for Computing and Social Responsibility, De Montfort University, UK. Her work has been published in numerous peer-reviewed journals, such as Design Studies, The Cambridge Journal of Anthropology and Cultural Anthropology.

Bibliographic information

  • Book Title An Ethnography of Household Energy Demand in the UK
  • Book Subtitle Everyday Temporalities of Digital Media Usage
  • Authors Roxana Moroşanu
  • Series Title Palgrave Studies in Anthropology of Sustainability
  • Series Abbreviated Title Palgrave Studies in Anthropology of Sustainability
  • DOI
  • Copyright Information The Editor(s) (if applicable) and The Author(s) 2016
  • Publisher Name Palgrave Macmillan, New York
  • eBook Packages Social Sciences Social Sciences (R0)
  • Hardcover ISBN 978-1-137-59340-5
  • Softcover ISBN 978-1-349-93474-4
  • eBook ISBN 978-1-137-59341-2
  • Edition Number 1
  • Number of Pages XIII, 199
  • Number of Illustrations 10 b/w illustrations, 0 illustrations in colour
  • Topics Ethnography
  • Buy this book on publisher's site


“This lively, vigorously written account shows just how humdrum actions can be made to yield unexpected insights. If we think energy-saving interventions cannot be rendered sympathetic to the patterns people value, this book suggests we think again. It also invites the anthropologist to think again about research design. Remarkably, the author invented a repertoire of interactions through which she extended the research participants’ means of expression, and simultaneously transformed the potential of her own questions.” (Marilyn Strathern, Professor Emeritus of Social Anthropology, University of Cambridge, UK)

“Authoritative, engaging and highly relevant, this impressive interdisciplinary synthesis spans engineering, practice theory, ethnography, and the sociology of time. Well-grounded in empirical research, it offers a refreshingly innovative take on the too-often neglected topic of energy efficiency. Many useful insights emerge on how global imperatives for transformation can be addressed in everyday practices of domestic lives. The result is a significant practical and conceptual contribution in a crucial area of current politics and policy.” (Andy Stirling, Professor of Science and Technology Policy, University of Sussex, UK)

“Moroşanu’s book offers lively reflections on ethics, sociality, and time as British families adapt to digital media and energy transition.” (Dominic Boyer, Professor and Director, Center for Energy and Environmental Research in the Human Sciences, Rice University, USA)