In episode 4 of the Digital Sociology Podcast I spoke to Louise Reid from the School of Geography and Sustainable Development at the University of St Andrews about her research on energy demand, smart technology and wellbeing.
Louise told me about some of her findings about how people engage with and understand technologies which allow them to monitor their energy usage.
She told me about how she used analysis of Mumsnet discussions to explore how people use smart energy devices. This was really useful because it was a completely different kind of interaction compared to a traditional research interview. This generated much more detailed data on how participants’ interact with their technologies and enabled the researchers to observe the seemingly mundane reality of how people engage in energy practices.
We also talk about the differences between how research is done in digital sociology and digital geography and what the two are learning from one another.