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Gender perspectives on sustainability focus of new project

How can we enable sustainable living in the Nordic region? How can we better understand how differences in lifestyle arise? This is the focus for the project Sustainability, lifestyles, and consumption from a gender perspective, which is a part of the cross-sectoral Sustainable lifestyles in the Nordic region programme. The project is implemented by NIKK, tasked by the Nordic Council of Ministers. It starts during autumn 2021.


In a mapping, differences in women’s and men’s lifestyles and consumption in the Nordic countries will be examined. Through current knowledge, the mapping aims to make gender stereotypes visible and challenged in relation to consumption and lifestyle, and contribute to a better understanding of how differences arise, are strengthened and reproduced.

‘The project aims to illustrate gender differences in lifestyles and consumption and the need for future policies and practices to integrate gender aspects into sustainable consumption. As gender equality is key in order to achieve a sustainable Nordic region, the project contributes greatly to the vision of the Nordic Council of Ministers of becoming the most sustainable and integrated region in the world in 2030’, says Kristin Mattsson, steering group member of the cross-sectoral Nordic programme.

Sustainability and lifestyle concepts will be studied and analysed from a broad intersectional gender perspective, in relation to themes raised in the cross-sectoral program on sustainable lifestyles. These can be, for example, communication about sustainability, education for sustainability, sustainable cultural and food experiences.

Critical and intersectional perspectives will be included thoroughly to make visible and problematize how different power structures intersect, for example how class and age affect both consumption habits and norms around consumption.

By analysing sustainability and lifestyle from a gender perspective, the project contributes to improving understanding and opportunities for sustainable consumption. The knowledge mapping will be launched in autumn 2022.

About the Sustainable lifestyles in the Nordic region programme

The cross-sectoral programme Sustainable lifestyles in the Nordic region programme is a collaboration between the Nordic co-operations for sustainable development, environment and climate, food, culture, education and research, gender equality and Nordbuk, the Nordic committee for children and youth. The programme is carried out 2021-2024 and aims to make it easier and more attractive for Nordic consumers to prioritise healthy and climate and environmental friendly choices. Through several cross-sectorial initiatives, it will contribute to fasten the normalisation of sustainable lifestyles in the Nordic region.

The programme, as well as the project focusing on gender perspectives on sustainably contribute to the Nordic vision, especially the part concerning a green Nordic region, as well as several of the Sustainable Development Goals in Agenda 2030.

Updated 12 November 2021