Focusing on spatialities and just transitions, Bhavna’s work has explored and advanced the practice perspective in sustainable consumption. A strong focus of her work has been on qualitative research methods, where digital ethnography has been an important aspect of the empirical work undertaken.
Bhavna is currently the Research Fellow in the ARC industrial training and research hub for Transformation of Reclaimed Waste Resources to Engineered Materials and Solutions for a Circular Economy (TREMS) (2021-2026). As part of the hub, she is researching the social and policy dimensions of waste production, consumption and management.
Bhavna is a CI on a project funded by the Fight Food Waste CRC, researching connections between consumer meat waste and refrigerator use, and on a Fuel Poverty Research Network’s (UK) funded ECR research grant, examining multiple vulnerabilities through the nexus of food and fuel poverty.
Previously, Bhavna was the Research Fellow on the ARC project HEET (Housing Energy Efficiency Transitions), examining industry, stakeholder and householder experiences for scaling up retrofits for a sustainable and just transition to zero-carbon housing.
Bhavna’s previous research experience has also included
- Examining and proposing scenarios for 20-minute neighbourhoods in green-field sites in Melbourne (Living locally: Beveridge volume 1 and 2)
- Investigating the bespoke digital and social media community engagement platforms of local governments in Victoria and their relationship to urban planning and development for better participation and democratic outcomes (DEMUDIG);
- An AHURI-funded research project that was a rapid response to capture the changing lived experiences of low income households in Victoria during COVID-19 (The lived experience of COVID-19: housing and household resilience)
- As a CI on an internal RMIT ECP-funded project looking at changes in food and packaging waste in Melbourne during COVID-19.
Bhavna’s doctoral research (PhD awarded December 2019) examined the eating spaces of an inner urban university and how relationships between eating practices of students and these spaces is negotiated for sustainable outcomes. Using multiple methods, including digital ethnography, practiced spaces of the university were highlighted in the research that addressed sustainable consumption issues such as convenience food and packaging and food insecurity among international students. Besides highlighting the unsustainable trajectories of eating spaces at the university, her thesis drew attention to some other ways that lived spaces could be reimagined for sustainable outcomes, such as through university eating spaces being designed and used as urban commons, and convivial third spaces of eating that are spatially and temporally flexible.