ACCESS - Advancing Capacity for Climate  and Environment Social Science
ACCESS - Advancing Capacity for Climate  and Environment Social Science
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Dr Rebecca Collins

Last modified: February 22, 2024
ACCESS Network

Sustainability and Environment Research Institute Director
University of Chester


The sector(s) I work in: Academic

Professional qualifications:

PhD, FHEA, Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society






About the organisation(s) I've worked for

Organisation name:

University of Chester

About my experience and expertise

Personal statement:

I’m a human geographer who has been researching young people’s engagement with the idea of sustainable futures for nearly 15 years. I’ve done this through the lens of everyday material culture and concepts of waste, and – most recently – through young people’s imaginations of professional future selves in a net zero world. Most of my work has been premised on collaborations with young people as co-researchers, where they devise the scope and approaches of our shared projects. I’m a qualitative researcher with an interest in creative research methods, including arts- and play-based enquiry, and (auto-)ethnography.

Key topic areas of research or interest:

Young people’s imagined futures, particularly in relation to the possibilities of/for ‘good work’ in a ‘net zero world’

Young people’s relationship with, and feelings towards, nature and environmental concerns

The material culture of young adulthood, particularly in relation to opportunities for more sustainable consumption

Collaboration opportunities:

I’m keen to explore collaborations with anyone who likes to put young people’s experiences at a time of environmental crisis front-and-centre in their research. At the moment I’m particularly interested in their relationships with nature, and in the impact of environmental crisis on their professional futures.


‘The intimate socialities of going carbon neutral’. Transactions of the Institute of British Geographers.

‘Temporal tensions in young adults’ efforts towards influencing institutional climate action’. Children’s Geographies.

‘Nature, nurture, (Neo-)nostalgia? Back-casting for a more socially and environmentally sustainable post-COVID future’. Social and Cultural Geography.

‘Ambivalent storage, multi-scalar generosity, and challenges of/for everyday consumption’. Social and Cultural Geography.

‘Excessive… but not wasteful. Youth cultures of everyday waste (avoidance).’ cultural geographies.

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