I was feeling uncomfortable with flying for some years but didn’t imagine I could cut down on it. Then I started reading more about it and realised only 3% of the global population are frequently flyers, so there’s nothing ‘normal’ about flying; it’s a privilege, pure and simple. I have resolved never to fly for conferences, only occasional fieldwork if it’s truly necessary, never to fly for holidays – unless it’s to visit family where train travel isn’t possible. I’m a big believer now in the personal as well as collective benefits of flying less – improved mental well being, more time to engage with my local community, the list goes on and on!
I am a theatre-maker (www.sputniktheatre.co.uk) and until recently a researcher in the Humanities, working on contemporary Russian culture. Spurred on by a desire to work with environmental issues, I had a mid-career change, so I’m now researching academic flying and how to reduce the university sector’s dependence on flying. I co-founded Oxford University’s Flyingless Policy and Research Group.