New PostDoc joins Geography’s Environmental Governance Research Group

We welcome Dr. Mary Jo Lavelle who has recently joined the Geography Department. Dr Lavelle will be working as a Post Doc with Professor Davies Group and is funded by the Environmental Protection Agency.

Dr Lavelle
Dr Lavelle

Dr. Lavelle’s research interests are situated in the field of environmental sustainability; specifically household consumption behaviours and the conceptual models that underpin environmental behaviour change, sustainable lifestyles, as well as issues pertaining to health and wellbeing.

Current Research

Mary Jo’s current research activities involves the examination and evaluation of longitudinal impacts of sustainable washing and eating practice interventions across a number of households across Ireland, as part of an ethnographical study called Homelabs. This research is part of the CONSENSUS Project (Consumption, Environment and Sustainability); which is a large-scale seven-year interdisciplinary project in the Republic of Ireland and Northern Ireland that is funded under the EPA/STRIVE programme 2009-2015 and is led by Professor Anna Davies.


Before joining the School of Natural Sciences at Trinity College Dublin Mary Jo worked as a Postdoctoral Research Fellow at the School of Geography and Archaeology at the National University of Ireland, Galway. Here, Mary Jo’s research explored the role of segmentation analysis and its utility in promoting greater understanding of pro-environmental behaviours and lifestyles. She was successfully awarded postdoctoral funding from the Irish Environmental Protection Agency to study this important area.

Mary Jo was also successfully awarded EPA funding to conduct a large-scale quantitative research study as part of her PhD research to examine household consumption behaviours in the areas of water, energy, food and transport across the island of Ireland. Prior to commencing her PhD studies, Mary Jo graduated with a Master’s Degree in Health Promotion from the National University of Ireland, Galway in 2008.

Mary Jo received awards for her research from the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research; the College of Arts, Social Sciences and Celtic Studies at NUI, Galway; and the Centre for Environment, Development and Sustainability (CEDS). She has published in peer-reviewed journals such as Quality in Ageing and Older Adults and Irish Geography, as well as with Routledge Publishers.

Selected Publications

Lavelle, M.J. and Fahy, F. (2014) ”Unpacking the challenges of researching sustainable consumption and lifestyles” In: Challenging Consumption: pathways to a more sustainable future. London: Routledge.

Lavelle, M.J. (2013) ‘Transitioning towards sustainable consumption: The importance of combining quality of life indicators with economic policy measures’. In: Whitaker Institute for Innovation and Societal Change eds. Paper Proceedings: Wellbeing in Ireland Conference: Designing Measures and Implementing Policies, pp.41-45.

Power, M. & Lavelle, M.J. (2011) ‘Qualifications of non-nursing residential care staff in the Republic of Ireland’. Quality in Ageing and Older Adults, 12 (3):152-161.


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