BiNKA (German acronym for education for sustainable consumption through mindfulness training)
is an inter- and transdisciplinary research and development project funded by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF).
It aims to investigate the relationship between mindfulness and sustainable consumption in an intervention study.
BiNKA is a cooperation of the Technische Universität Berlin and the UNESCO Chair of higher education for sustainable development at the Leuphana University Lüneburg. Project management is located at the Technische Universität Berlin, in the department of vocational education/economics and sustainable consumption. Three partners in practice, two project partners and several network partners are also part of the cooperation. The project is funded for three years (2015 to 2018) by the German Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF).
In the past, mindfulness training has been successfully used in order to reduce chronic stress levels and wellbeing whilst increasing concentration capabilities.
The BiNKA project connects these effects to education for sustainable consumption by researching a well-known phenomenon: the discrepancy between environmental awareness and actual behaviour, the so called attitude-behaviour-gap.
Education for sustainable consumption (ESC) aims at empowering people to consume more sustainably and is hence seen as important driver of sustainable development. Therefor overcoming the attitude-behaviour-gap is a decisive challenge. Present mindfulness research outcomes point at the potential of mindfulness training for bridging that gap through actively increasing awareness about one’s central values and behaviour. It might aswell enable practitioners to act and consume in a more consistent way with their own values.
In the project, we are thus empirically analysing the relationship between mindfulness competency and (sustainable) consumption behavior in pupils, students and employees.