The second life of things: a sociological study of the process to reappropriate obsolete objects
The research project is part of the literature on sustainable consumption, the relationship to objects and daily life. It aims to explore how everyday objects (e.g., clothing, computers, furniture, books, decorations, etc.) gain a second life after falling out of common use.
The objectives are three-fold:
- Understand the process by which objects fall out of common use and are reappropriated in relation to, among other things, the symbolic aspect, the culture and social norms, the spaces in which they circulate and stakeholders, as well as the broader social context, including institutions and regulations.
- Identify levers to transform consumption practices, extend the service life of objects and reduce material resource consumption.
- Formulate recommendations to promote different ways of optimizing the use of everyday objects and ensure concerns about sustainable consumption and circular economy research initiatives are aligned.
An ethnographic survey will be conducted in different spaces where objects are repaired, sold, exchanged or donated (e.g., fab labs, garage sales, online ads, stores, repairers, etc.) and follow the journeys of the objects themselves.