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Stanley Blue supervises 2 postgraduate research students. If these students have produced research profiles, these are listed below:

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Dr Stanley Blue

Senior Lecturer

Stanley Blue

Bowland North



Tel: +44 1524 595113

Research overview

My work is about how the temporal organisation of social life matters for contemporary and future ways of living and consuming. Basically, I’m interested in how changing patterns of consumption matter for public health and for sustainability.

Theoretically, I draw on theories of practice (Bourdieu, Giddens, Schatzki, Shove), time (Zerubavel, Southerton), and rhythm (Lefevbre) to explore how certain ways of living and consuming take hold, how they become reproduced, and how they change.

For example, I’ve developed a particular theoretical approach to institutional change, combining theories of practice with rhythmanalysis to examine how different kinds of institutional organisation (broadly interpreted) make and shape patterns of consumption.

The aim of this work is to show how activity-organising-features like time (but also space, materiality, professional responsibility, and others), construct both contemporary ways of living and the envisaged possibilities for future ways of consuming.

The point is to properly consider how these might be different. That is, I’m interested in exploring how those kinds of features are and might be ‘shaped’ to enable less resource intensive patterns of consumption and promote healthy(er?) ways of living.

Substantively, I have developed these ideas through projects on the timing of energy and travel demand in hospitals and the flexibility of energy systems and through writing about public health issues related to smoking and obesity.

If you are interested in theories of practice, we have a website which is a great place to find reading lists, our podcasts, videos, and a structured set of links – Practice Theory at Lancaster.

PhD supervision

I would be happy to work with students whose projects relate to my research interests, including work on theories of practice, time, space, rhythm, materiality, embodiment, habit, consumption, demand, mobility, energy, travel, and public health, smoking, obesity, and exercise.

Web Links


Current roles include:

  • Co-Investigator on the EPSRC funded Centre for Research into Energy Demand Solutions (CREDS);
  • Director of Sociology - leading the delivery and development of the undergraduate and postgraduate programmes;
  • Convenor of the first-year, part 1 course, SOCL101: An Introduction to Sociology - on which I teach an introductory block on ‘Sociological Approaches to the Study of Consumption’.

Current Research

I am currently Co-I on the EPSRC funded Centre for Research into Energy Demand Solutions (CREDS). I work on the Flexibility Theme and lead project 4.2.3 on 'Time-Dependence and Flexibility in Institutions'.

Publications include:

  • work on Conceptualising Flexibility with Elizabeth Shove and Peter Forman in Time and Society;
  • work on combining practice theory and rhythmanalysis in Time and Society
  • a chapter on the idea of temporal coordination as a method for reducing demand for energy and travel in hospitals in Demanding Energy;
  • an introduction to the Sociology of Consumption in The Cambridge Handbook of Sociology;
  • a paper, co-authored with colleagues at the Norah Fry Research Centre, on a practice-inspired approach to disability studies in Disability and Society;
  • an article on exercise and the environment in Health and Place;
  • a book chapter with Nicola Spurling on how institutional practices change in The Nexus of Practices;

Invited lectures/talks include to: 

For more on current and past research projects, publications, and talks; media articles, press, and videos; engagement, impact, and more - please see my Personal Website.

Additional Information

Academic collaborations include:

Co-I, Centre for Research into Energy Demand Solutions (2018-2023);

Research Fellow, DEMAND Centre, Lancaster University (2015-2017);

Affiliated with the Norah Fry Institute at the University of Bristol (2015-2017);

Visiting Fellow, Centre for Urban Research, RMIT, Melbourne (Oct-Dec 2016);

Member of the Sustainable Consumption Institute at the University of Manchester (2013-2015).

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