University of St Andrews



I graduated with an MA (Hons) in Environmental Geography in 2003 followed by an MSc in Sustainable Rural Development in 2004, both from the University of Aberdeen. Before embarking on my PhD in 2006, I worked for a variety of organisations (including the University of Aberdeen, Macaulay Land Research Institute, and Aberdeen City Council) undertaking research and teaching duties. This included a 12 month period as research assistant on the EU FP6 SENSOR project.

My PhD was the first of its kind: an ESRC and Scottish Government Collaborative Studentship, from which I graduated in November 2010 (University of Aberdeen). In it, I explored the topic of ‘Environmental Behaviour Change: A Role for Household Diaries?', and worked closely with the Scottish Government Environment Social Research Team, spending three months working in Government in Edinburgh. 

Towards the end of my PhD I started working as a Research Fellow on the ESRC/BBSRC/MRC funded project BeWEL: Behaviour for Well-being (June 2009-September 2010). I moved to St Andrews in October 2010 as a Research Fellow working on the ‘Housing and Environmental Sustainability’ theme within the Centre for Housing Research, University of St Andrews, taking up the position of Lecturer in Sustainable Development and Geography in September 2011. 



  • ESRC DTC departmental rep
  • Module coordinator for SD3221 Frontiers in Sustainability Research: Do Good Lives Cost the Earth?
  • Contributor to: SD1003, SD3002, SD3221, SD3205, SD4299, SD5001, SD5003, SD5009
  • Royal Geographic Society & Institute of British Geographers (RGS-IBG) Planning Environment Research Group (PERG) Committee.


Research Interests

As a social scientist, proficient in the use of mixed methods, my main research interests surround the relationship between people and the environment, and the sustainability of this relationship. I am particularly interested in:

  • Environmentally sustainable behaviours and/or low carbon living, and how the processes through which these influence and are influenced by everyday household life. See my ESRC Smarter Homes? project website for further details on this topic.
  • Theories of change and learning, especially the role of reflexivity
  • Personal well-being, what it means to be well and how this may influence sustainability


Teaching Interests

  • Domestic energy demand/consumption
  • Theories of practice and behaviour
  • Interacting with nature and personal well-being
  • Mixed methods, especially with diaries


Postgraduate Students

  • Lizzie Cole (School of Geography & Geosciences)
  • Rebecca Folly (School of Geography & Geosciences)
  • Katherine Ellsworth-Krebs (School of Geography & Geosciences)