This paper seeks to uncover a diversity of economic practices and engagement by home renovators, predominantly homeowners. In particular, the authors explore how different forms of media consumption and production intertwine to shape home renovation projects. While the Australian renovation market is a multi-billion-dollar industry, it is cut through with small-scale, informal modes of knowledge production and economic exchange. How people use media to learn, share and document their renovations reflects the diversity of this economic landscape. From how-to videos on YouTube and the curated homewear pages of Pinterest to the mainstream impact of The Block, media platforms occupy a significant place in the ways in which people renovate. Yet, few studies actually examine the specificity of media use.
In response, this paper traces the renovators’ media practices involved in the everyday labour of home renovation; projects which require substantial social and emotional resources, diverse literacies and enterprise. This paper's conceptual framework draws from the logic of ‘double articulation’, an enduring insight offered by Silverstone, Livingstone, Hirsch and others to examine the pivotal discursive and instrumental role played by media in home renovation.
Industry misconceptions around high cost and poor market interest in energy efficient homes continue to obstruct the mass adoption of low carbon housing. Josh’s House demonstrates that low carbon housing is accessible and cost effective. The Star Performers series showcases how...Read more
In response to feedback, high-income households can reduce their energy use to a larger degree than low-income households (17% vs 3% reduction). This and other insights were gained by two rapid reviews into research, both Australian and International, on digital services and...Read more
A rapid review on green-rated office buildings, and their operational energy use, found that the conclusions of six studies ranged from the certified buildings performing worse, similarly or much better than the non-certified buildings in terms of energy usage intensity. Two...Read more
This CRC for Low Carbon Living project investigates the role that media plays in shaping home renovation practices. This second report tells the story of the Home Renovators’ Media World. It provides a more detailed and nuanced understanding of the roles of media in home renovation processes, from the perspective of renovators. Such an understanding is essential in developing more effective communication and community engagement to achieve home renovations which are more energy efficient and which contribute to lower carbon dioxide emissions.
Home renovations demonstrate the interplay between economic transactions and cultural values that shape consumption practice and consumer markets. The academic disciplines of environmental and social sciences and spheres of environmental policy and practice have taken interest in renovations because of their implications for improved environmental outcomes. However, a considerable blind spot in this work has been an out-of-step, largely one-dimensional, or peripheral engagement with media.