Dr Sam Hampton
Sam is an environmental geographer with a focus on the governance of energy and climate change.
His research examines the ways in which environmental impact relates to everyday life. It begins with the idea that energy and resource consumption are bound up in social practices such as travelling to work, cooking and eating, and achieving comfort. This perspective tells us that policies designed to reduce environmental impact require an understanding of how and why social norms and behaviours become established. For instance, the steady increase in 'normal' indoor temperatures over the last 50 years, the transition from bathing to showering, or the proliferation of plastics in food production and consumption.
Sam has applied these ideas to the practices of small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), and the policies developed to reduce their energy consumption. Sam leads a project funded by the UK Energy Research Centre, investigating how policy and governance might ensure that SMEs can play a full part in driving down emissions in the UK. GoZero is comparing approaches to business support across the four nations and five selected sectors: horticulture, restaurants, hairdressers, trades, and industrial supply chains. The team, which includes colleagues from Open University and Sheffield Hallam University, is working closely with local and national government and business-representative organisations.
Prior to leading GoZero, Sam has conducted research on various energy and transport innovation projects, including Go Ultra Low Oxford, and Energy Superhub Oxford. In 2020-21, Sam led a team of researchers across the university to map different pathways to achieving zero carbon emissions in Oxfordshire by 2050. The project, called Pathways to a Zero Carbon Oxfordshire, was awarded the School of Geography and the Environment Impact and Engagement award in 2022.
Alongside his research in the ECI, Sam also holds a position as a Research Fellow at the University of Bath, where he is leading an ESRC-funded project seeking to understand what it will take for the diverse UK population to become more 'carbon capable'. He also works as a freelance sustainability consultant, with a focus on project evaluation and business support. Clients include the Low Carbon Hub, Energy Saving Trust, and Oxford Innovation.
- Banfield, J., Hampton, S. and Zurek, M. (2022) Towards a pedagogical policy turn in geography. Journal of Geography in Higher Education, 46: 161-166.
- Hampton, S. and Curtis, J. (2022) A bridge over troubled water? Flood insurance and the governance of climate change adaptation. Geoforum, 136: 80-91.
- Hampton, S., Blundel, R., Wahga, A., Fawcett, T. and Shaw, C. (2022) Transforming small and medium-sized enterprises to address the climate emergency: The case for values-based engagement. Corporate Social Responsibility and Environmental Management.
- Hampton, S., Fawcett, T., Rosenow, J., Michaelis, C. and Mayne, R. (2021) Evaluation in an emergency: Assessing transformative energy policy amidst the climate crisis. Joule, 5(2): 285-289.
- Fawcett, T. and Hampton, S. (2020) Why and how energy efficiency policy should address SMEs. Energy Policy, 140(May 2020, 111337): 1-6.
- Hampton, S. (2018) Making sense of energy management practice: reflections on providing low carbon support to three SMEs in the UK. Energy Efficiency: 1-18.
- Hampton, S. (2018) Policy implementation as practice? Using social practice theory to examine multi-level governance efforts to decarbonise transport in the United Kingdom. Energy Research and Social Science, 38: 41-52.
- Hampton, S. (2018) ‘It’s the soft stuff that’s hard’: Investigating the role played by low carbon small- and medium-sized enterprise advisors in sustainability transitions. The Journal of the Local Economy Policy Unit.
- Hampton, S. and Adams, R. (2018) Behavioural economics vs social practice theory: Perspectives from inside the United Kingdom government. Energy Research and Social Science, 46: 214-224.
- Hampton, S. (2017) An ethnography of energy demand and working from home: Exploring the affective dimensions of social practice in the United Kingdom. Energy Research and Social Science, 28: 1-10.
- Weatherall, D., Wilkinson-Dix, J., Bill, E., Horne, S., Wilkinson, T., Blundel, R., Hampton, S. (2022) How can policy better support SMEs in the pathway to Net Zero? Climate Change Committee, London.
- Hampton, S., Knight, L., Scott, H., Budnitz, H., Killip, G., Wheeler, S., Smith, A., Eyre, N. (2021) Pathways to a zero carbon Oxfordshire. Environmental Change Institute, University of Oxford
- Hampton, S., Schwanen, T., Doody, B., (2019) Go Ultra Low Oxford Phase One: Monitoring and Evaluation Final Report. Transport Studies Unit, Oxford University Centre for the Environment, Oxford.
- Hampton, S., Banks, N., (2022) Recognition justice and the evaluation of low carbon innovation projects, in: ECEEE Summer Study Proceedings. Presented at the ECEEE Summer Study, Hyeres, France.
- Hampton, S., Killip, G., Smith, A., Eyre, N., Knight, L., Scott, H., Budnitz, H. and Wheeler, S. (2021) Pathways to a zero carbon Oxfordshire. Proceedings of ECEEE Summer Study (online), 7 - 11 June 2021. paper 5-096-21.
- Zahiri, S., Gupta, R., Hampton, S., (2021) Natural experiment to measure change in energy use and indoor environment in dwellings with smart heat pump retrofits. Eceee Summer Study Proceedings. European Council for an Energy Efficient Economy, 8(137-21)
- Hampton, S. and Fawcett, T. (2020) Can energy projects be over-evaluated? Energy Evaluation Europe 2020.
- Blundel, R., Fawcett, T., Shaw, C., Hampton, S. and Westall, A. (2017) Growing green?: co-creating an evidence-based model of SME engagement. ISBE Annual Conference 2017 (8-9 November 2017, Belfast).
- Hampton, S. and Fawcett, T. (2017) Challenges of designing and delivering SME energy policy. European Council for an Energy Efficient Economy, Summer Study 2017.
- Hampton, S. and Roberts, A. (2017) Behavioural economics vs practice theory: a policy professional’s perspective. Energy Research and Social Science conference, Sitges, Spain.
- Hampton, S., Cooper, A. and Grünewald, P. (2017) Practice makes policy? The role of government and policy in shaping practices. Energy Research and Social Science conference, Sitges, Spain.
- Hampton, S. (2016) Policy in practice: can policy programmes learn from practice theory? BEHAVE Conference, Coimbra, Portugal.
- Hampton, S. (2016) The practice of working from home and the place of energy. DEMAND Centre Conference, Lancaster, 13-15 April 2016.