Dr Catherine Cherry

Research Associate

Research group:
Social & Environmental Psychology
Email:
CherryCE@cardiff.ac.uk
Telephone:
029 208 76520
Location:
51A Park Place

Research summary

I am a Research Associate at Cardiff University, working within the Understanding Risk Research Group. Collaborating with the Universities of Leeds, Bath and Nottingham Trent, as well as the Green Alliance, I currently work on the CIE-MAP project: Opportunities and barriers to achieving transitions in UK energy and materials use: The role of publics, society and decision-makers. Prior to this I completed my PhD within the Understanding Risk Research Group, entitled: “Exploring discourses of decarbonisation: The social construction of low carbon housing”.

Selected publications (2014 onwards)

 

Full list of publications

 

Research topics and related papers

Collaborating with the Universities of Leeds, Bath and Nottingham Trent, as well as the Green Alliance, I currently work on the CIE-MAP project: Opportunities and barriers to achieving transitions in UK energy and materials use: The role of publics, society and decision-makers. To achieve a low carbon society, a step change in reducing the energy expended by UK industry is needed, and can only come about if we are able to identify new ways of designing, using, and delivering products, materials and services. While traditional research on mitigation of carbon emissions has focused on direct consumption of energy, the role that materials and products might play is less well studied. The project aims to conduct a programme of novel empirical research into public perspectives on and acceptability of a range of different demand reduction strategies, designed to reduce the energy used in industry, materials and products.

Despite a background in natural science (BSc Environmental Science and MSc Climate Change), prior to this position I completed my PhD research, entitled “Exploring discourses of decarbonisation: The social construction of low carbon housing” with the School of Psychology at Cardiff University. My thesis explored the discourses surrounding low carbon housing as they exist within different sectors of society – policy, media, expert and public - employing an interpretive qualitative methodology, and utilising discourse and thematic analysis to explore low carbon housing discourse. Investigating the assumptions surrounding the incentives and mechanisms for change embedded within the discourses, the thesis highlights the socially constructed nature of low carbon housing, demonstrating the important role that environmental and everyday values play in public understandings of what is often considered to be a purely technological entity. This alternative understanding of low carbon housing within the public sphere opens up a new discursive space and may provide a new direction from which to approach the issue of reducing carbon emissions.

Funding

Our current research is funded by the Research Council’s Energy Programme, CIE-MAP forms one of six centres focuses on reducing energy demand in the UK.

My PhD research was funded Cardiff University joint scholarship: Department of Psychology and Department of Engineering.

Research group

Social & Environmental Psychology
Understanding Risk
Sustainable Places Research Institute

Research collaborators

Professor Nick Pidgeon

Undergraduate education

2005-2008: BSc Environmental Science, Queen Mary’s College London.

Postgraduate education

2012-2015: PhD, Cardiff University. Thesis title “Exploring discourses of decarbonisation: The social construction of low carbon housing”.

2009-2010: MSc Climate Change, University of East Anglia (NERC funded). Thesis title “Distributing the burden of climate change mitigation: the influence of science, ethics and development”.

Employment

2015-2018: Research Associate, Cardiff University.

2009-2010: Climate Change and Energy Intern, Friends of the Earth (Full time position).