Amy Isham


Postgraduate Research Student
BSc Psychology, MSc Psychology of Advertising
8:30-5:30, Monday to Friday.

Biography

I completed my undergraduate degree of the University of Warwick in 2015 before moving straight on to begin my master’s at Lancaster University. Up to this point my research had focused on the area of consumer psychology, and in particular I conducted research projects examining the factors that led people to buy impulsively online. When completing my master’s course my interests altered slightly and I became interested in the negative impacts of advertising, and consumer culture in general, on society.

In particular, I began to see the potential to use knowledge surrounding the effects of exposure to different kinds of advertising to try and lessen the influence of such stimuli; for example in cases whereby individuals are engaging in excessive buying or consumption of a particular product or service (childhood obesity, compulsive buying…). The research that I am conducting as part of my PhD focuses on one specific aspect of consumer culture, materialistic values, and seeks to understand how these can be reduced in order to improve individual well-being and promote more sustainable behaviours

My qualifications

2016
MSc Psychology of Advertising
Lancaster University
2015
BSc Psychology
University of Warwick

Research

Research interests

My teaching

Courses I teach on

Undergraduate

Postgraduate taught

My publications

Publications

Isham, A., Gatersleben, B., & Jackson, T. (2018). Flow Activities as a Route to Living Well With Less.
View abstract View full publication
Research suggests that the excessive focus on the acquisition of material goods promoted by our consumer society may be detrimental to well-being. Current Western lifestyles, which promote unsustainable patterns of production and consumption, therefore risk failing to bring citizens the happiness they seek. Csikszentmihalyi suggested that engaging in challenging, flow-conducive activities is a means by which individuals can improve well-being without substantially affecting the environment. In this article, we test this proposal by examining data concerning the daily experiences and well-being of 500 U.S. families. We show that individuals who experience stronger characteristics of flow in their leisure activities tend to have greater momentary well-being, whereas those experiencing flow more frequently report greater retrospective well-being. Moreover, a small negative relationship was found between an activity’s flow score and its environmental impact. The analysis allows us to identify a specific group of high-flow, low–environmental impact activities.