The Psychology of Consumption

Gaby Hinsliff writing in the Guardian (11 April 2012) challenges us to consider the

“viability of the everyday habits to which we feel blithely entitled” and asks the question “when will the stigma now attached to rampant consumerism spread to the over consumption of natural resources?”

My visit this week to Sheffield University’s Psychology Department was to look at how we might collaborate on finding ways to develop greater understanding as to why we consume fashion in the way that we do. If we have greater understanding of the motivations and decision making behind our sartorial choices, then could we be encouraged to spend more and consume less? Just what are the psychological processes behind our clothing purchases? Could we come to embrace having clothes for longer, rather than putting them unworn at the back of our wardrobes? Hopefully we might begin to find some interesting answers.