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Simple and Painless? The Limitations of Spillover in Environmental Campaigning

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Abstract

The comfortable perception that global environmental challenges can be met through marginal lifestyle changes no longer bears scrutiny. The cumulative impact of large numbers of individuals making marginal improvements in their environmental impact will be a marginal collective improvement in environmental impact. Yet, we live at a time when we need urgent and ambitious changes. An appeal to environmental imperatives is more likely to lead to spillover into other pro-environmental behaviours than an appeal to financial self-interest or social status.

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... Alibaba Research Institute (2016) found that green products' (green home decoration, decorative materials, and green furniture) online sales proportion has exceeded 20%. Sustainable consumption become a prevalent research topic among both scholars and practitioners (Juhl et al., 2017;Lanzini and Thøgersen, 2014;Maki et al., 2019;Thøgersen and Crompton, 2009). Interesting research theme included driving factors to pro-environmental behavior (Barbarossa and De Pelsmacker, 2016;Gupta and Ogden, 2009), consumers' green consumption attitude-behavior gap (ErtzErtz and Sarigöllü, 2019), and spillover effect of consumers' pro-environmental behavior (Thoøgersen, 1999). ...
... Furthermore, spillover effect implies that engaging in a proenvironmental behavior may increase or decrease the probability of engaging in the subsequent pro-environmental behavior (Lanzini and Thøgersen, 2014;Nilsson et al., 2017). There are still some inconsitences in previous research regarding to the spillover effect of pro-environmental behaviors (Lanzini and Thøgersen, 2014;Thøgersen and Crompton, 2009). Some previous research indicated positive spillover effect (e.g., Lanzini and Thøgersen, 2014;Thoøgersen, 1999), whereas some previous research suggested negative spillover effect (e. g., Mazar and Zhong, 2010). ...
... The foot-in-the-door effect predicts that acceptance by consumers of a small request leads to greater likelihood of compliance with a subsequent larger request (Freedman and Fraser, 1966). Thus, foot-in-the-door effect provides strong theoretical support for positive pro-environmental behavior spillover effect (Thøgersen and Crompton, 2009). Prior research has also established that the psychological process driving foot-in-the-door effect is self-perception consistency (Burger, 1999;DeJong, 1979). ...
Article
Despite the importance of positive spillover effect for shaping sustainable consumption behaviors, it is still unclear that how one pro-environmental behavior led to the subsequent pro-environmental behavior. This study explored the relationship between pro-environmental preference and consumers' eco-friendly behavior intentions, and how self-determination need satisfaction, that is, need satisfaction for competence, relatedness, and autonomy mediated the relationship. In this study, we empirically examined the theoretical model utilizing the online survey data of 346 participants in China. The results showed that competence need satisfaction, relatedness need satisfaction, and autonomy need satisfaction partially mediated the relationship between pro-environmental preference and consumers' eco-friendly behavior intentions. The results demonstrated that self-determination theory plays a key role in explaining the psychological needs for consumers to transform pro-environmental preference into eco-friendly behavior intentions. The conclusion is that self-determination theory provides both theoretical and policy-oriented insights into fostering more sustainable behaviors by meeting individuals’ innate psychological needs.
... From the perspective of policymakers, research indicates that the interventions targeted at initial behaviours can either trigger environmentally friendly behaviours or decrease other PEBs through positive or negative spillover effects [6]. Whether the influence is positive or negative has a specific relationship with the type of intervention [7,8]. As classified by [9], pro-environmental interventions include any attempt to encourage behaviour change, i.e., 'a request to perform a new behaviour, public education campaign, tax incentive, provision of green infrastructure such as kerbside recycling, and regulatory policy'. ...
... A positive spillover effect refers to the occurrence of one environmentally friendly behaviour that drives other environmentally friendly behaviours [15]. By contrast, a negative spillover effect refers to the occurrence of an environmentally friendly behaviour that inhibits other environmentally friendly behaviours [7]. ...
... Conversely, the voluntary participation policy leads to a significant increase in people's sustainable consumption behaviour. The results contradicted the widespread approaches of environmental campaigning, which assumed that people will be motivated to behave in an environmentally friendly way after performing a PEB [7]. This current research shows that this spillover effect can only motivate subsequent PEB under a voluntary participation policy. ...
Article
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The increasing amount of waste in cities poses a great challenge for sustainable development. Promoting waste sorting is one of the priorities for various levels of public authorities in the context of the rapid growth of waste generation all around China. To achieve this goal, waste-sorting policies should be precisely designed to ensure successful waste reduction at all stages. Previous studies have neglected the spillover effects of different regulatory policies, which may affect the overall goal of reducing waste by influencing different waste production stages. This paper fills this gap by comparing the spillover effects of two typical waste-sorting policies on sustainable consumption behaviours through a survey conducted in Shanghai and Beijing (control group). By combining quasi-natural experiment and questionnaire methods, this paper analyses data through a mediation test to explore the spillover effects between different regulatory policy groups and the effects of the mediation psychological factors. Results show that a penalty policy significantly decreases people’s sustainable consumption behaviours through a negative spillover effect, while a voluntary participation policy significantly increases sustainable consumption behaviours through a positive spillover effect. Results can provide implications for policymaking in waste management and other pro-environmental fields to help cities become more sustainable by shifting multiple behaviours.
... Besides direct climate benefits, an additional argument used to justify the expenses of these incentives is that the adoption of climatefriendly transport modes may act as a "catalyst behaviour" [5], increasing the likelihood that adopters engage in further environmentally friendly behaviours [6], which would then further contribute to decreasing GHG emissions [7,8]. There is mounting theoretical and empirical evidence (e.g., [6,9,10]) backing the existence of such a proenvironmental behavioural "spillover"; i.e., that following proenvironmental behaviour, people are more likely to undertake further pro-environmental behaviours [11], in turn increasing the likelihood of them undertaking further pro-environmental behaviours in a 'rippling' manner. ...
... However, behavioural spillover assumes the existence of a common motivational basis underlying the different pro-environmental behaviours an individual undertakes [12,13], leading to some researchers questioning the durability and "rippling power" of proenvironmental behaviours created by external rewards [14,15]. Others have argued that undertaking a pro-environmental behaviour may sometimes create negative spillover [8], where other pro-environmental behaviours are deterred or inhibited [16][17][18]. For example, individuals may feel justified in giving themselves some "slack" after a good deed [19], or they may feel depleted and therefore that they lack the resources needed to undertake a second pro-environmental behaviour [20]. ...
... For example, individuals may feel justified in giving themselves some "slack" after a good deed [19], or they may feel depleted and therefore that they lack the resources needed to undertake a second pro-environmental behaviour [20]. Further, people may believe that what they have already done has solved the problem [18], or that the problem is a collective one, and that therefore A) it is too big for them to solve alone, and/or B) their existing pro-environmental behaviours are a fair contribution to solving the issue [8,11]. Subsequently, these feelings and beliefs may make individuals less inclined to secondary pro-environmental behaviours to solve the problems of GHG emissions and climate change [21,22]. ...
Article
The conception that undertaking a certain pro-environmental behaviour may encourage people to adopt other pro-environmental behaviours is appealing, but the evidence is inconsistent. Based on the literature, we propose that the relative strength of relevant personal norms and compensatory beliefs following an initial pro-environmental behaviour are decisive for whether people are more, less, or equally likely to perform other pro-environmental behaviours. Using survey data (N = 217) collected in Norway among ‘to-be owners’ of battery electric vehicles and recent owners of plug-in hybrid electric vehicles regarding their performance of pro-environmental behaviours, we tested a multiple indicators and multiple causes model where intrinsic normative process and compensatory beliefs predict a behavioural score obtained by a Rasch model. The analysis showed that the personal norm was the strongest predictor of pro-environmental behaviours, while compensatory beliefs exert a significant negative influence on both personal norm and behaviours. Further, a significant difference in compensatory beliefs was found between ‘to-be owners’ of battery electric vehicles and recent owners of plug-in hybrid vehicles. Some background variables included in the model as covariates were also found to influence certain constructs in the model. Implications for theory and policy and limitations of the study are discussed.
... Researchers have traditionally focused on the direct impact factors that affect the inclination of engagement in pro-environmental actions (Antonetti & Maklan, 2014;Gupta & Ogden, 2009;van Valkengoed & Steg, 2019). Recently, considerable attention has been paid to the consequences of pro-environmental consumption choice for subsequent, environmentally relevant decision-making (Mullen & Monin, 2016;Reczek et al., 2018;Thøgersen & Crompton, 2009;Urban et al., 2019;van Valkengoed & Steg, 2019). However, results are mixed regarding how prior pro-environmental consumption behavior affect subsequent green consumption choice. ...
... The arguments of the green highlighting effect follow the logic of self-perception theory to propose that performing a pro-environmental behaviour enhances or activates a person's internal pro-environmental disposition and therefore increase the likelihood that the person repeats the pro-environmental behaviors in future. In short, the green highlighting arguments emphasize individuals' cognitive change in pro-environmental behaviour or self-identity after performing initial pro-environmental consumption decisions (Thøgersen & Crompton, 2009). The arguments of the green licensing effect, however, rely on a goal logic rather than cognitive change. ...
... Specifically, the green licensing effects in sequential behavior are built on a fundamental assumption that consumers have multiple, sometimes conflicting goals which result in motive conflict for a given target behavior (Garvey & Bolton, 2017;Mullen & Monin, 2016). Given multiple, sometimes conflicting goals, an initial pro-environmental behavior helps individuals to "earn" credits in a metaphorical moral bank account that can be used to "buy" forgiveness/license for their nonsustainable behaviors that are targeted at other goals rather the environmental protection goal (Thøgersen & Crompton, 2009). These separate and different logics for green licensing and highlighting effect are key source of confusion on the consequence of initial pro-environmental consumption decisions on subsequent pro-environmental behaviors. ...
Article
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How to motivate consumers to maintain environmentally responsible consumption choice rather than occasional green consumption is an important component of sustainability within modern society. Yet, past literature provides two contradictory routes for sequential pro-environmental decisions: consistency effect and licensing effect. The consistency effect builds on follows the logics of self-perception theory and implies that consumers tend to repeat their prior environmentally responsible and irresponsible decisions; the licensing effect follows a goal-based logic to highlight that past pro-environmental behaviour produces a “license” to engage in less pro-environmental behaviour. To reconcile these contradictory predictions, this study extends the existing literature by following a consistent, goal-based logic in theory and exploring self-construal as a moderator that switches from one mode of sequential pro-environmental decisions to the other. Three experimental studies affirm that self-consistency effect occurs for consumers with an accessible interdependent self-construal, but licensing effect is more pronounced for consumers with an accessible independent self-construal. In addition, the interdependent- consistency effect will be stronger and the independent-licensing effect will be weaker if consumers are reminded of high tendency of others’ pro-environmental behaviour in the first decision. Together, these results shed light on the downstream consequences for consumers of pro-environmental choice, with implications for the marketing and regulation of such products.
... In light of this, researchers tried to go a step further and investigated whether and how individual differences facilitate positive spillover effects. In this regard, internal values and norms (e.g., Thøgersen & Olander, 2003), positive attitudes towards the environment (e.g., Crompton & Thogersen, 2009), selfefficacy (Lauren et al., 2016), and self-identity (e.g., Meijers et al., 2019;van der Werff et al., 2013) seem to play a crucial role, in line with consistency-based explanations of the phenomenon. The endorsement of norms concerning the care of the environment and more general positive attitudes towards the environment have been found to predict positive spillover (Crompton & Thogersen, 2009;Thøgersen & Olander, 2003). ...
... In this regard, internal values and norms (e.g., Thøgersen & Olander, 2003), positive attitudes towards the environment (e.g., Crompton & Thogersen, 2009), selfefficacy (Lauren et al., 2016), and self-identity (e.g., Meijers et al., 2019;van der Werff et al., 2013) seem to play a crucial role, in line with consistency-based explanations of the phenomenon. The endorsement of norms concerning the care of the environment and more general positive attitudes towards the environment have been found to predict positive spillover (Crompton & Thogersen, 2009;Thøgersen & Olander, 2003). ...
... Finally, on the one hand, the positive spillover effect is more likely to occur when environmentalism is relevant to self-identity (e.g., Carfora et al., 2017;Crompton & Thogersen, 2009). On the other hand, we argued that positive spillover would be more likely for analytical thinkers. ...
Article
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Research literature about the environmental spillover effect produced mixed results, revealing that an initial pro-environmental behavior (PEB) is likely to promote either other PEBs (i.e., positive spillover) or pro-environmental inactions and harming behaviors (i.e., negative spillover). Such inconsistency suggests a possible crucial role of moderating variables. In two experimental studies (N Study 1 = 141, N Study 2 = 124), we investigated whether the recall of past environmental behavior (water-saving vs. water-wasting) affects future intention to perform PEBs (Study 1) and actual PEBs (Study 2), depending on participants’ cognitive mindset (manipulated in Study 1 and measured in Study 2). Results showed that the cognitive mindset is a significant moderator of spillover effects. Compared to a holistic one, an analytical mindset is more likely to result in a greater willingness to engage in future PEBs (Study 1) and actual PEB (Study 2) when past PEB is salient. The main contributions of the studies, limitations and possible future research directions are discussed.
... Generalization theory suggests that as people engage in environmentally friendly behavior such as investing in PV, and they would also do other environmentally friendly behavior such as decreasing the use of electricity [88]. Generalization has been successfully shown in many applied research of environmental behaviors [89]. Generalizations are more likely to happen when individuals are trained to associate multiple discriminative stimuli to signal reinforcers rather than just one stimulus [88]. ...
... The following research suggests values act as an intrinsic motivation for people to invest in PV. Additionally, generalization theory suggests that the following values can act as a discriminative stimulus for people to perform similar pro-environmental behaviors that align with their values [88,89]. These studies suggest that to increase the probability of positive generalization toward the environment, we should target their intrinsic motivation to be the discriminative stimulus rather than investing in PV as discriminative stimuli for reinforcement. ...
Article
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The increase in nonrenewable energy (non-RE) has been a growing concern for low-income individuals’ quality of life, health, economy, and environment. At the same time, the use of non-RE is also a great concern for the whole population as we are breathing the same environment. The photovoltaics (PV) solar panel is one solution to decrease low-income individuals’ energy bills and increase the quality of life of all individuals. Knowing the behavioral theory of why low-income individuals do not adopt PV would allow further insights and possible interventions to help low-income individuals install PV. Research has found that low-income individuals are more likely to have financial and knowledge barriers that hinder them from installing PV. Providing a way for low-income individuals to combat these barriers would help them to use PV. This review showed that low-income individuals are likely to benefit from policy programs that incentivize them to use PV. More knowledge about PV can also be aided by policy programs that inform low-income individuals how to save financially and at the same time work their way to install PV. Social groups could also be formed in the same policy programs to help low-income individuals share strategies on saving financially and knowledge about the benefit of installing PV. These social groups can act as a social reinforcement to low-income individuals to install PV. Helping low-income individuals to install PV would help low-income individuals financially and improve the population’s quality of life.
... Finally, refraining from a specific pro-environmental behavior can be justified by doing so in another domain (Thøgersen & Crompton, 2009), or by a lack of pro-environmental behavior by others (Lorenzoni et al., 2007). Therefore, maintaining a positive moral self-image while behaving selfishly seems easier in the environmental domain. ...
... There are multiple possible reasons for not finding such an effect. First, the characteristics of environmental issues, lacking an identifiable victim, and being complex, global, unintentional, and prone to free-riding issues, may liberate selfish behavior without the psychological costs of doing so (Gino et al., 2010;Lorenzoni et al., 2007;Markowitz & Shariff, 2012;Thøgersen & Crompton, 2009). Somehow related, it might be that moral cleansing occurs only above a certain threshold of immorality. ...
Article
This study investigates moral cleansing triggered by different types of immoral behaviors. We employ an incentivized online experiment (N=532) where participants are randomly assigned to recall one of three situations in their past: a time they behaved immorally in the interpersonal domain, a time they behaved immorally in the environmental domain, or a neutral event. Participants can then engage in an act of moral cleansing that is either costly (donating part of the participation bonus) or costless (expressing an intention to sign a petition), and choose the beneficiary of the prosocial behavior. Sentiment analysis of the content of the recalls confirms that recalling an immoral behavior, independently of the domain, leads to more negative sentiment than recalling a neutral event. This effect is particularly strong when recalling an immoral behavior in the interpersonal domain. Recalling immoral behaviors in the interpersonal domain influenced the relative composition of donation versus petition behavior, but not the overall amount of prosocial behavior. In particular, it increases the probability of engaging in costly moral cleansing and reduces engagement in costless moral cleansing. However, when the immoral behavior is in the environmental domain, participants do not display even costless moral cleansing. Finally, we observe a preference for compensating in the same broad domain as the immoral behavior. Our results extend the understanding of moral cleansing and suggest some policy implications, especially advising against counting on the ability of pro-environmental morality to guide behavior.
... Behavioural spillover is a phenomenon where engagement in one pro-environmental behaviour changes the likelihood of engagement in other pro-environmental behaviours. There is good theoretical support for behavioural spillover from psychology (e.g., cognitive dissonance and self-perception theories) and other disciplines (e.g., social practice theory), suggesting that environmental values, self-identity, skills and knowledge, and self-efficacy processes may produce spillover effects (Thøgersen & Crompton, 2009). Engagement in pro-environmental behaviours may lead to further positive changes (known as 'positive spillover') though motivational reinforcement and changes in environmental identity (Truelove et al., 2014), but also to 'negative spillover' through moral licensing (e.g. ...
... Unexpectedly, contribution ethic mediated positive spillover into public-sphere intentions. This finding is counter to how contribution ethic has been theorised in the literature (Thøgersen & Crompton, 2009). This finding suggests that perhaps contribution ethic is a motivational force of environmental engagement, and further research should seek to clarity the effect of this construct on spillover. ...
... Dolayısıyla H 2 hipotezi desteklenmiştir. Bu bulgu, ahlaki lisanslamanın davranışsal yayılma üzerindeki olumsuz etkilerine ilişkin mevcut çalışma sonuçlarıyla tutarlıdır (Diekmann ve Preisendorfer, 1998;Khan ve Dhar, 2006;Mazar ve Zhong, 2010;Thøgersen ve Crompton, 2009). ...
... Yol analizinin sonuçlarına bakıldığında; çevresel kimliğin turistlerin çevre dostu davranışları üzerinde pozitif bir etkisi vardır ve H 1 hipotezi desteklenmiştir. Elde edilen bulgular, çevresel kimliğin çevresel davranışları olumlu etkilediğini gösteren önceki araştırmaları (Clayton, 2003;Stets ve Biga, 2003;Lanzini ve Thøgersen, 2014;Thøgersen ve Crompton, 2009;Thøgersen ve Noblet, 2012) desteklemektedir. Çalışmada ahlaki lisanslamanın ise, çevre dostu davranışlar üzerinde negatif bir etkisinin olduğu sonucuna ulaşılmış ve H 2 hipotezi de desteklenmiştir. ...
Article
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Turizmin çevre üzerinde gittikçe artan olumsuz etkileri mevcuttur. Bu olumsuz çevresel etkileri azaltmak ve sınırlamak için turistlerin sorumlu davranışlarda bulunmasına ihtiyaç vardır. Çevre sorunlarının aciliyeti ve ciddiyeti, çevre dostu davranışların öneminin anlaşılmasını gerektirmektedir. Çevre dostu davranış denilince, genel olarak bireysel davranışların neden olduğu olumsuz çevresel etkilerin azaltılması anlaşılmaktadır. Bu bağlamda çalışmanın amacı çevresel kimlik ve ahlaki lisanslamanın turistlerin çevre dostu davranışlarına etkisinin incelenmesidir. Çalışma kapsamında 330 kişiden çevrim içi anket tekniği ile veriler elde edilmiştir. Verilerin analizinde yapısal eşitlik modellemesi kapsamında doğrulayıcı faktör analizi ve yol analizi yapılmıştır. Analizler sonucunda çevresel kimliğin turistlerin çevre dostu davranışları üzerinde pozitif bir etkisi olduğu, ahlaki lisanslamanın ise negatif bir etkisi olduğu sonucuna ulaşılmıştır. Elde edilen sonuçlar doğrultusunda çevre dostu davranışları arttırmak ve ahlaki lisanslamanın etkisini azaltmak için çeşitli önerilerde bulunulmuştur.
... 574), introduces further considerations for target behavior selection. An intervention targeting one pro-environmental behavior may increase or decrease the likelihood of others (i.e., positive and negative spillover, respectively) [11,12]. Depending on the magnitude of these effects, spillover could have significant implications for program design and evaluation. ...
... While the behavioral mechanisms responsible for spillover are still not well understood [10], research and theory generally suggest positive spillover is more likely to occur amongst "similar" behaviors [10][11][12][16][17][18]. Behaviors can be similar in terms of various attributes, such as where and when they occur, resources required, and function. ...
Article
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A key component of behavior-based energy conservation programs is the identification of target behaviors. A common approach is to target behaviors with the greatest energy-saving potential. The concept of behavioral spillover introduces further considerations, namely that adoption of one energy-saving behavior may increase (or decrease) the likelihood of other energy-saving behaviors. This research aimed to identify and describe household energy- and water-saving measure classes within which positive spillover is likely to occur (e.g., adoption of energy-efficient appliances may correlate with adoption of water-efficient appliances), and explore demographic and psychographic predictors of each. Nearly 1,000 households in a California city were surveyed and asked to report whether they had adopted 75 different energy- and/or water-saving measures. Principal Component Analysis and Network Analysis based on correlations between adoption of these diverse measures revealed and characterized eight water-energy-saving measure classes: Water Conservation, Energy Conservation, Maintenance and Management, Efficient Appliance, Advanced Efficiency, Efficient Irrigation, Green Gardening, and Green Landscaping. Understanding these measure classes can help guide behavior-based energy program developers in selecting target behaviors and designing interventions.
... From a psychological perspective, it is known that people are mentally bookkeeping financial costs [26] but also various other values and behaviors. For example, Thøgersen and Crompton [27] speak of negative spillover effects in environmental behavior. They argue that lowering one's personal carbon footprint might lower the probability to show even more pro-environmental behaviors in return. ...
... For the first time, the influence of a "lockdown" on pro-environmental behavior and materialism values was investigated. Although findings of previous research on rebound, negative spillover effects and mental accounting (e.g., [27]) seemed to be adaptable in the context of a COVID-19-lockdown, our findings did not support this assumption. However, the COVID-19-pandemic and this first-ever lockdown, in spring 2020, was an exceptional situation. ...
Article
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The COVID-19 pandemic led to serious restrictions on peoples’ everyday lives and had severe economic impacts. In contrast, “lockdown” restrictions led to short-term beneficial effects for the environment. In the present study, we compared pro-environmental behavior and materialism values before, during, and after COVID-19 lockdown restrictions in the spring of 2020. The results of an online study using 370 participants showed a decrease in materialism values and pro-environmental sacrificing actions. In contrast, ecologically compatible actions decreased during the lockdown and increased again to the initial level after restrictions were loosened. Moreover, pro-environmental attitudes had a diminishing effect on materialism values, especially during lockdown restrictions. Agreeableness had a diminishing effect on materialism values during the lockdown. In contrast, trait narcissism enhanced materialism values, which were strongest after the lockdown was over. In conclusion, materialism values and pro-environmental behaviors were “locked down” due to COVID-19 restrictions but did not show the expected rebound effects. Practical and theoretical implications are discussed.
... The dynamic growth of the organic food markets has enforced marketing researchers to explore the insights of consumers. Organic food is emerging as a combination of traditional and innovative food production, processing and preservation methods with contemporary marketing practices (Thøgersen & Crompton, 2009). It became the most popular food segment in the ethical and sustainable product line (Juhl et al., 2017), and certified organic food has gained greatest momentum in recent years (Rizzo et al., 2020). ...
... The rising consumer awareness and increase in per capita income of Asian countries are also growing with organic demand in these countries with stable market development (Aryal et al., 2009;Pedersen et al., 2018;Yadav & Pathak, 2016). The unique national context (e.g., differences in national food cultures, organic agriculture's share of total agriculture, and the maturity of the organic market) depicts a distinctive scenario of each native market with respect to consumer preferences and choices of organic food products (Thøgersen & Crompton, 2009). ...
Article
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Thisis the first study that explores consumer perception, preferences, and barriers in the purchase of non-certified organic food. The qualitative approach was applied to investigate the phenomena in real-life settings. Twenty-eight interviews were conducted from organic shoppers in specialized organic food markets. Data were analyzed from detailed parts to categories, themes, dimensions, and codes. Finding shows that organic food buyers are well aware of organic food benefits by virtue of its production methods. Although there are similarities in results between certified and non-certified organic food, however, many unique themes such as subcategories of health motives, various dimensions of trust, role of sales person, inelastic price, role of organic food cues, deceptive marketing, etc. are explored. Based on consumption motives, several categories of organic food consumers are also reported. The research has contributed to the literature by offering a consumer decision map that depicts important factors that play a vital role in the purchase of non-certified organic food. The pragmatic insight offered in this study can assist growers, enterprises, and policy makers in developing consumer understanding especially in ninety two other countries operating without organic food regulations. The results will be useful in developing a quantitative model for future studies.
... Even those who are concerned about climate change may fail to translate this into meaningful lifestyle changes (157). A general lack of attention to more impactful personal actions has been underpinned by a long-standing public discourse that normalizes and emphasizes relatively trivial behaviors (e.g., switching off lights and washing at 30°C) (157,158). ...
... Perspectives that emphasize lifestyles and consumption help to foreground the fundamental inequalities and injustices in the drivers of climate change (see Section 5.1). There are large variations in emissions between different lifestyles even within similar social groups and geographic regions (not least those with high income versus those without) (2,129)-and yet, there has so far been a pervasive failure to direct mitigation efforts toward high emitters and emission-intensive practices (156,158,162). Confronting such variation and inequality requires demand management practices that target high-carbon lifestyles without disproportionately impacting more vulnerable communities. ...
... However, this research does not specifically focus moral licensing in the context of environmentally friendly behavior, but rather in different fields of action (e.g., donations, heating, volunteering). Thøgersen and Crompton (2009) conclude that positive spillover effects in the context of pro-environmental behavior become less likely for dissimilar behaviors. In line with that, the meta-analysis by Maki et al. (2019) found positive spillover to be less likely and negative spillover effects to be more likely for low similarity of two pro-environmental behaviors. ...
... Previous studies on behavioral spillover effects have already considered the role of consumption contexts with regard to two subsequent climate-relevant actions (e.g., Barr et al., 2010;Littleford et al., 2014). As stated in section "Same or different product category, " past research suggests that positive spillover effects are more likely for highly similar pro-environmental behaviors and negative spillover effects are more likely in less similar pro environmental behaviors (Thøgersen and Crompton, 2009;Maki et al., 2019). This literature however, mainly focuses on classes of pro-environmental behaviors (or product categories) and therefore do not take into account the consumption contexts. ...
Article
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Rebound effects on the consumer level occur when consumers’ realized greenhouse gas emission savings caused by behaviors that might be beneficial to the environment are lower than their potential greenhouse gas emission savings because the savings are offset by behavioral adjustments. While previous literature mainly studied the economic mechanisms of such rebound effects, research has largely neglected the moral-psychological mechanisms. A comprehensive conceptualization of rebound effects on the consumer level can help fill this void and stimulate more empirical research in this relevant area. To this end, the paper introduces three focal dimensions of rebound effects on the consumer level: mechanism of rebound effects, product category, and consumption context. Based on this conceptualization, and integrating assumptions from the theory of moral licensing, the theory of categorization, and the construal level theory, this paper further refines the conceptualization of the moral component as an explanatory factor for rebound effects and highlights that the moral-psychological mechanisms of indirect rebound effects (i.e., rebound effects that occur across different product categories or consumption contexts) are more complex and diverse than the economic mechanisms. The paper outlines promising directions for future studies considering the different quantification and characteristics of economic and moral currencies that explain rebound effects on the consumer level and the strategic categorization of products and consumption contexts.
... The issue is even more pronounced in the case of adoption since it is easier for individuals to consider adoption in tandem with the subsequent post-adoption use, which provides the ideal environment for moral licensing to take place 9 . That said, moral licensing is less probable when adoption is costly in monetary or in other terms 115 ; when it is motivated by underlying pro-environmental values and identity 116 ; and when individuals conceive adoption as part of a process and not the end of it, therefore creating a feeling of progress and self-efficacy 64,[117][118][119] . The policymaking implications of such findings are that in order to avoid moral licensing when promoting adoption, monetary incentives, if in place, should not be the main focus of the campaign or intervention. ...
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The extent to which adopting energy-efficient technologies results in energy savings depends on how such technologies are used, and how monetary savings from energy efficiency are spent. Energy rebound occurs when potential energy savings are diminished due to post-adoption behaviour. Here we review empirical studies on how six behavioural regularities affect three energy-relevant decisions and ultimately rebound: adoption of energy-saving products or practices, their intensity of use and spending of associated monetary savings. The findings suggest that behaviours that reflect limited rationality and willpower may increase rebound, while the effects of behaviours driven by bounded self-interest are less clear. We then describe how interventions associated with each of the behavioural regularities can influence rebound and thus serve to achieve higher energy savings. Future research ought to study energy-relevant decisions in a more integrated manner, with a particular focus on re-spending as this presents the greatest challenge for research and policy. The energy-saving impact of energy-efficient technologies can be diminished by rebound resulting from post-adoption behaviour. This Review examines how behavioural regularities affect energy-relevant decisions and associated rebound effects
... One example is the finding that installations of solar panels on rooftops are potentially triggered by peer behaviour [71]. Positive spillover effects [72] between energy community members could therefore influence conservation behaviour, although community membership might also provoke negative responses such as moral licensing [73,74], if membership in a clean energy community is used as a moral justification for indulgence in behaviours with negative environmental impacts. ...
Article
Given the gaps between EU ambitions regarding energy community development and the current reality of clean energy communities in Europe, we explore a research framework enabling viable multi- and interdisciplinary research into new clean energy communities. We offer a definition of new clean energy communities, discuss their potential for wider dissemination and identify four factors that contribute to the current mismatch between ambitions and reality in energy community development. As a broader framework for interdisciplinary research into the field of new clean energy communities, we propose polycentric governance theory, considering the fact that the area of community energy systems is essentially multi-scalar, and that the rules of engagement in such systems are of great significance. This opens up four avenues for research on energy communities, which we outline in terms of enabling institutional contexts, potential for learning and transferability, business models and value propositions, and evaluation of outcomes and processes.
... For example, Weber (1997) found that American farmers who had adapted their production practices in response to climate change (e.g., through crop selection or tillage practices) were less likely to adopt a price-based adaptation action (e.g., using futures contracts) and were less supportive of government interventions to curb climate change. Thøgersen and Crompton (2009) found that the implementation of a new biodegradable plastic bag not only increased Danish consumers' plastic bag consumption but also reduced their other recycling behaviors. Multiple studies on safety and health behaviors have also found a relationship between the way a remedy is advertised and its impact on risk compensation behaviors (Dilley et al., 1997;Kelly et al., 1998;Bolton et al., 2006). ...
Article
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Although green technological innovation is designed to combat climate change, recent research suggests that increased attention to technological innovations might decrease climate change risk perception and reduce pro-environmental behaviors due to the feeling of being assured, which is referred to as risk compensation behavior. Although there has been a growing interest in reducing the risk compensation effect related to climate change, the academic literature in this area is very limited. In this study, we propose a psychological intervention to mitigate a sample of university students' ( N = 1,500) irrational response to green technological innovation so as to promote their pro-environmental behaviors. Our experiments identify students' mental construal level as an important psychological factor that, when combined with a proper message framing strategy of introducing new green technologies, can remedy their irrational response to new green technologies. Our findings suggest that highlighting the new technology as playing a preventive/promotional role related to climate change can mitigate risk compensation behavior and eventually promote students' pro-environmental behaviors when they are at a high/low mental construal level.
... Discussions about the fundamental incompatibility of marketing ideology and sustainability have been going on since the 1960s (Carson, 1962;Meadows et al. 1972; Kemper and Ballentine 2019), but it was not until 1998 that these discussions began to find their way into marketing journals (McDonagh and Prothero, 2014;Kilbourne, 2004;Press & Arnould, 2009;Prothero and Fitchett, 2000;Prothero, McDonagh and Dobscha, 2010;Shultz and Holbrook, 1999;Thøgersen and Crompton, 2009) The vast majority of sustainability marketing articles fail to address the macro level values and institutions that prevent marketing and markets from being sustainable (Kemper and Ballentine, 2019). However, there are some notable exceptions that claim 'business as usual' is not good enough, encourage transformation over reformation, and even go so far as to call for a reconfiguration of the dominant social paradigm in order to transition to a sustainable way of life (Borland and Lindgreen, 2013;Kilbourne, McDonagh and Prothero, 1997;McDonagh and Prothero, 2014). ...
Article
Following Slavoj Žižek, critical marketing scholars have interrogated the ideological fantasies of mainstream marketing, de-romanticising markets and marketing. However, Žižek argues there is no ideology-free subject, so it stands to Žižekean reason that critical marketing scholars are also ideological fantasists. Our paper seeks to de-romanticise critical marketing theory by identifying the fantasy of capitalist corruption. This sustains the ideology of critical marketing theory by disavowing (self-)destructive desires within the human unconscious and suggesting that displacing capitalism will be enough to usher in a postcapitalist utopia. This ideological fantasy has therapeutic, motivational, and institutional benefits, but romanticises the human subject in ways that ultimately frustrate the critical project of societal betterment. By acknowledging the human unconscious as a corrupting influence, we hope to make critical aspirations more likely to be realised. We illustrate our argument via studies of sustainability, a favoured topic of Žižekean, critical, and mainstream scholars alike.
... Social marketing has, however, attracted divergent comment from the positive role of 'nudging' behaviour to negative mention of the legitimacy it offers existing, unsustainable practices . Darnton et al. (2008) note that it offers the potential to be useful towards initiating small, stepped changes with particular groups, whereas Webb (2012) cites a review of the evidence from evaluation studies (Thøgersen and Crompton 2009) that suggests the concept of 'nudging' and of small "wedge behaviours" acting as a prelude and enabler of greater change is flawed. ...
... In addition, the study on moral licensing shows that the previous PEB may restrain rather than promote the subsequent PEBs, because once people perform an environmental "good deed," they will feel that it is reasonable to slack off on other PEBs [15], or believe that they are allowed to commit immoral behaviour in the future. Therefore, in some cases, the implementation of PEB will produce positive spillover (the increase of subsequent PEB or the reinforcement of environmental attitude), while in other cases, it will lead to negative spillover (the decrease of future PEBs and the weakening of environmental attitude). ...
Article
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Research has shown that the extent to which previous environmental actions are linked to people’s environmental self-identity influences subsequent environmentally-friendly behaviour. The study empirically examined the influences of recycling efforts on subsequent pro-environmental behaviour by PLS (partial least squares) structural equation modelling based on the survey data of 426 respondents in China. The results indicate that recycling efforts have a positive effect on pro-environmental behaviour through the mechanism of feelings of pride and environmental self-identity. We hypothesise that past pro-environmental behaviour is more likely to promote an individual’s environmental self-identity when the behaviour is incurred with a higher costliness. However, the results show that only when individuals autonomously perform costly recycling behaviour, the signalling strength of previous recycling efforts is higher to promote environmental self-identity. On the contrary, the high costliness weakens the signalling strength of previous recycling efforts through producing negative emotions. Our results show that when reminding people of their past pro-environmental behaviour in order to promote future pro-environmental behaviour, it is useful to emphasize the autonomously taken costliness of behaviour as it can strongly signal that one is a pro-environmental person, thus as to strengthen environmental self-identity.
... Third, the perception of sufficient progress induced by financial incentives may mitigate beliefs that citizen engagement in environmental protection is still necessary, resulting in a decrease in the perceived importance of individual contribution. Drawing on the theory of moral licensing, prior research has proposed that when past PEB implies progress toward pro-environmental goals, people may feel that they have already done their part and experience less moral responsibility to act environmentally (Thøgersen and Crompton, 2009). Moreover, incentive policies may convey that government authorities believe that citizens are incapable of solving environmental problems by themselves and that citizens should be passive followers in the process of environmental governance (Ostrom, 2000). ...
Article
Waste management is a prototypical issue that requires multiple policy measures to function together. Yet, the compatibility between waste management policies is vastly understudied. In this paper, we used a longitudinal quasi-experimental methodology to identify the effect of an incentivized household recycling program in Anji, China on public support for other waste management policies. The program was evaluated six and fifteen months after it was implemented, respectively. We found that, despite its positive influence on residents’ self-reported recycling behavior, the program reduced support for policy measures concerning waste prevention and harmless disposal. Consistent with the theoretical propositions, such crowding-out was driven by the decrease in personal commitment to pro-environmental goals, perceived issue importance of environmental sustainability, and perceived importance of individual contribution to environmental goods. Further evidence suggests that the crowding-out effect attenuated but did not disappear in the long run. These findings contribute to a more comprehensive understanding of the holistic relationships between waste management policies, indicating that incentive-based recycling policies can interact negatively with other waste policies by reducing public support for them.
... Given that this paper examines pro-environmental technology spillovers within a social business context, it is imperative first to review the literature on pro-environmental behaviour spillovers. The potential for spillovers to increase the reach of pro-environmental campaigns, including those promoting pro-environmental technologies, as a costeffective and nonintrusive way of promoting beneficial behavioural change is of great interest to policymakers and social businesses (DEFRA, 2008;Thøgersen and Crompton, 2009). Prior literature reports both positive and negative spillover effects in the context of pro-environmental behaviour. ...
Article
Based on a new social business initiative, aiming to reduce CO2 emissions in China with the development of a new solar photovoltaic/thermal system that promises higher overall energy efficiency, lower costs, and better monitoring and control settings than existing systems, this study examines how pride triggered by environmentally-friendly technology adoption spills over into conservation behaviours. The study used an online survey of 163 Chinese customers and a pride-inducing methodology to investigate how pride in purchasing pro-environmental technology could lead to positive spillovers. A Partial Least Squares approach to Structural Equation Modelling was used to analyse the results. Feelings of pride elicited by the intentions to purchase the novel technology positively affect subsequent behaviours of reducing energy consumption by other means (same domain), as well as recycling and reusing materials (different domain). Pride appeals can be leveraged by social businesses as by definition they focus on the social good and, according to our findings, pride-inducing messages enhance the impacts of the pro-environmental technology adoption. Such spillovers can be beneficial to society, thus allowing social businesses to satisfy social and financial goals at the same time.
... To promote pro-environmental behaviours, such as investing in energy-efficiency measures, many campaigns emphasise financial benefits (Evans et al., 2013). However, campaigners have recently raised the issue that only tapping into financial motives may actually fail to promote the desired effect (Thøgersen and Crompton, 2009). Conversely, programmes that target intrinsic motivations might increase the likelihood to engage in pro-environmental behaviours, which has been shown to be significant at least for pro-environmental intentions (Maki et al., 2019). ...
Article
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In spite of the established importance that retrofitting the existing building stock has in decreasing end-use carbon emissions and of the large availability of policies aimed at financially supporting renovations, investments in the residential sector remain below the optimal levels. The paper proposes an encompassing theoretical framework that merges economic, behavioural and social motives and suggests diverse policy instruments to promote retrofitting and their appropriate targets. The paper exploits the Consumers Survey data from the Second consumer market study on the functioning of the retail electricity markets for consumers in the EU (2016) to calibrate an agent-based model of the thermal insulation investment choice. The model simulates the investment choice of 19,538 homeowners based on their perceived financial situation and environmental concern, and introduces unobserved networks on which adoption by imitation occurs. We investigate the effect of a financial incentive, a pro-environmental campaign and a norm-based intervention on the adoption rate. Results show that the interplay between economic, behavioural, and social motives produces unexpected outcomes: policies that leverage only one motive are nonetheless affected by the others.
... Notwithstanding early exceptions (e.g. Fisk, 1973), it took several decades before such questions appeared more regularly in mainstream marketing journals (McDonagh and Prothero, 2014;Kilbourne, 2004;Press and Arnould, 2009;Prothero and Fitchett, 2000;Prothero et al., 2010;Shultz and Holbrook, 1999;Thøgersen and Crompton, 2009). Even when they did, the proposed solutions to fundamental dilemmas like the (un)sustainability of ever-expanding markets were often premised on change within the existing system (Kemper and Ballentine, 2019). ...
Article
Since the 1970s critical marketing scholars have called for systemic change to overcome the ethical problems generated by consumption, such as unsustainable resource use, industry-induced climate change, and social inequities. Mainstream marketing research has instead problematised the individual consumer and sought ways to diminish the so-called gap between ethics and consumption. The current conceptual paper follows Carrington et al. (2016) and other contemporary critical marketing scholars in redirecting attention away from individual (un)ethical consumers and toward the (im)moral market structures that inflect their decision-making. Its first contribution to this line of thinking is to propose an ethical consumption cap rather than an ethical consumption gap. This subtle but significant shift in emphasis suggests that contemporary capitalism creates conditions in which ethical consumption is costly in terms of money, time and effort. Rather than the responsibilising rhetoric of the ‘gap’, the ‘cap’ acknowledges the plethora of systemic pressures that make it difficult for consumers to consume ethically and invites researchers to look elsewhere for solutions. The second contribution of this paper is to follow Grayling (2019) in delineating the character of ethics from the concept of morality, which is more suggestive of obligations and duties. With this etymology in mind, it is argued that other market actors can do much more to remove problematic choices from the market and thus raise the mean market morality. Attending to the average morality of markets instead of emphasising capped ethical consumerism treads a difficult conceptual path between conflicting political positions, but may buy enough time for viable socioeconomic alternatives to neoliberalism to emerge and expand.
... Behaviour spillover is defined as the spread of effects from a targeted behaviour to other related behaviours (Thøgersen, 2004;Thøgersen and Crompton, 2009). The spillover effects can either be positive by encouraging or negative by discouraging related behaviours in the domain (Dolan and Galizzi, 2015). ...
Article
Second-hand clothing consumption has grown in popularity in recent decades and has also attracted extensive worldwide efforts to investigate the dynamics behind consumers’ purchase behaviours. However, research regarding this topic is scarce in China, which has also witnessed the rapid growth of the second-hand market in recent years. In this regard, this study analyzed the motivations and barriers to Chinese consumers’ purchase of second-hand clothes as well as their perceived problems with this industry. Specifically, the study conducted a semi-structured online survey with 127 consumers of three second-hand clothing stores in China. Results show that the vast majority (96%) of the investigated consumers are young people born in the 1990s and 2000s, and they are neither significantly driven by economic nor environmental protection motivations. Instead, their purchase is primarily motivated by treasure-hunting fun. Moreover, past overseas shopping experiences are found to be a significant booster to second-hand clothing consumption. Concerns about poverty association and the sanitation conditions of second-hand clothing are the main purchase barriers for the investigated Chinese young consumers. As for the second-hand clothing market, “unregulated industry” (10.29%), “fake identification” (8.09%), and “sanitation concern” (5.88%) are the three most mentioned problems in China. This study provides second-hand retailors and managers with valuable insights into developing successful marketing tactics to attract customers and improve the second-hand industry’s performance in China.
... Green consumerism is reportedly also aided by government interventions (Muldoon, 2006) which encourage individuals for behavioral modifications to reduce personal environmental impact (Thøgersen & Crompton, 2009). Government has a significant role to play in protecting and setting ecological standards (Muldoon, 2006). ...
Article
In the 21st century, environmental problems are wreaking havoc, and sustainability is now of primary importance. Several external factors like population growth, industrialization, development, and overexploitation of natural resources play a crucial role in environmental degradation. Thus, the present study endeavors to explore the impact of price sensitivity, governments green interventions and green product availability on green buying intention through the lenses of the theory of planned behavior and the theory of consumption values. It also intends to examine the moderating effect of demographic factors on green buying intention. A cross‐sectional study was carried out. Responses were gathered through a self‐administered questionnaire‐based survey. The final data set of 708 respondents were subjected to structural equation modeling for hypothesis testing. Price sensitivity, government green interventions, and green product availability show negative and significant interaction effects. Perceived behavioral control shows a relatively more substantial impact on green buying intention. Indian consumers from the age group of 41–50 years relatively have higher intention toward green buying. Overall, gender does not reveal any different approaches to environmentally friendly products. Green marketers must focus on communicating the availability of green products to reduce perceived difficulty.
... Thus, business interests advancing iframe solutions may have benefit from a tail-wind of human psychology. 5 5. Finally, direct experimental evidence shows that the i-frame can "crowd out" s-frame considerations in policy-relevant contexts (Thøgersen &Crompton, 2009). Hagmann, Ho and show that merely alerting people (including policy makers in one study) to the possibility of an i-frame intervention (a green energy nudge) reduces support for more substantive policies (a carbon tax). ...
Article
An influential line of thinking in behavioral science, to which the two authors have long subscribed, is that many of society's most pressing problems can be addressed cheaply and effectively at the level of the individual, without modifying the system in which the individual operates. We now believe this was a mistake, along with, we suspect, many colleagues in both the academic and policy communities. Results from such interventions have been disappointingly modest. But more importantly, they have guided many (though by no means all) behavioral scientists to frame policy problems in individual, not systemic, terms: to adopt what we call the “i-frame,” rather than the “s-frame.” The difference may be more consequential than i-frame advocates have realized, by deflecting attention and support away from s-frame policies. Indeed, highlighting the i-frame is a long-established objective of corporate opponents of concerted systemic action such as regulation and taxation. We illustrate our argument briefly for six policy problems, and in depth with the examples of climate change, obesity, retirement savings, and pollution from plastic waste. We argue that the most important way in which behavioral scientists can contributed to public policy is by employing their skills to develop and implement value-creating system-level change.
... For example, they can gain reputation or status (Griskevicius et al., 2010), save money or improve their personal health (Gifford & Nilsson, 2014) through participation in environmental protection. However, from an applied-intervention perspective, the effectiveness of the two dimensions of rationality on the social action of being pro-environment has not been well established (Thøgersen & Crompton, 2009). Therefore, both rationalities may provide pathways to sustainable behavior. ...
Article
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This study explores the sustainable development of intangible cultural heritage (ICH) tourism from a rational behavioral process perspective based on the theory of planned behavior. A multi‐level conceptual model of ICH tourism and its intentions for sustainable development, including formal rationality and substantive rationality, is constructed. We discovered that it is not only altruistic intention that contributes to decision‐making in the sustainable development of ICH tourism, but egoistic benefit also has an impact on such decisions. This is an explorative study that provides a hierarchical linear conceptual framework for the sustainable development of ICH tourism by discussing practitioners' decision‐making behavior.
... Therefore, spillover effects between such PEBs are of great importance for transition processes at the individual level. In environmental psychology, a positive spillover effect occurs when one PEB has a positive effect on another PEB (Thøgersen & Crompton, 2009). Likewise, a negative spillover effect is characterized by one PEB having a negative effect on another PEB. ...
Thesis
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In the face of numerous environmental crises, empowering large groups of people seems to be a key ingredient for any socio-ecological transition. Unless people gain a sense of efficacy and believe that they can contribute to a transition, they are likely paralyzed by the dimension of environmental problems and remain inactive. In this thesis, I therefore asked the following questions: How do beliefs about efficacy relate to pro-environmental action? What factors predict efficacy beliefs? And do efficacy beliefs play a role in explaining when activism spills over to private behavior and vice versa? Taking a multimethod approach, this thesis includes an experiment, an interventional field study, a longitudinal study, and a conceptual paper. Based on self-efficacy theory and current social identity research in environmental psychology, I examined three efficacy agents (personal self-efficacy, collective efficacy, participative efficacy), two efficacy aims (direct: promote environmental protection, indirect: encourage others for environmental protection), four pro-environmental behaviors (private, indirect, public, activist), and two types of samples (environmental volunteers, non-volunteers). Three empirical manuscripts showed that people who reported more pro-environmental behavior usually had stronger efficacy beliefs (i.e., inter-individual relation). This was true for all of the investigated efficacy types. Yet, longitudinal analyses revealed that a change in efficacy beliefs did not necessarily go hand in hand with a change in pro-environmental behavior (i.e., intra-individual and longitudinal relations). Looking at specific efficacy types, self-efficacy regarding the indirect aim that one can encourage others best explained private and indirect behavior inter-individually. In a non-volunteer sample, this efficacy type also predicted activist behavior. We also found intra-individual relations of self-efficacy and private behavior. In a volunteer sample, participative efficacy was the best predictor of activist behavior both inter-and intra-individually. Associations of collective efficacy and pro-environmental behavior depended strongly on the group agent. Collective student efficacy predicted private and public intentions. Collective efficacy regarding all humanity revealed positive bidirectional longitudinal relations to private behavior. Collective efficacy regarding one's volunteer initiative lost its predictive value in all studies when participative efficacy was analyzed simultaneously. Despite their generally strong relations, efficacy beliefs did not mediate any spillover effects from private to activist behavior and vice versa. Notably, a number of correlative predictors of efficacy beliefs emerged that should be considered in future studies: social identification with a volunteer initiative, positive affect, visioning, perceived knowledge and skills, and structural factors. Moreover, private behavior was a positive and activist behavior a negative longitudinal predictor of collective efficacy regarding all humanity. In a conceptual manuscript that builds on these empirical insights, I proposed the triple-A framework of agents, actions, and aims. This framework facilitates research integration in the field of efficacy beliefs and makes suggestions on how to unfold psychology's transformative potential by considering concepts of agency. I conclude by integrating all findings into pre-existing literature, elaborating on theoretical implications, and presenting practical recommendations on the role of efficacy beliefs for socio-ecological change.
... Effron and Conway 2015;Tiefenbeck et al. 2013). Alternatively, because individuals may strive to behave consistently (Thøgersen and Crompton 2009), installing a solar PV system or switching to a green tariff might lead to lower electricity consumption (e.g. Sommer 2018). ...
... However, this impact was mostly small or moderate (Duvall and Zint, 2007). It only led to simple changes and hardly affected attitudes or actions (Parth et al., 2020;Thøgersen and Crompton, 2009). Specifically, most of the emerging research was observational and/or qualitative based on interviews with children and parents (Istead and Shapiro, 2014;Peterson et al., 2019). ...
Article
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Although commitment has been proved to be an influential approach to change behavior, it is still vague how it can be effectively implemented to promote recycling on large-scale operations for children and their families. This field study collected both quantitative and qualitative data to investigate the effectiveness of commitment-based approaches in encouraging children and their families to recycle. A total of 180 children (age 7 to 8 years) and 180 caregivers were assigned to one of four cumulative intervention conditions: signature, activity, copy, and agent. All the committed children developed better knowledge and behaviors of recycling after treatments. The agent group, in which children committed to promote changes in the family, had a significant improvement in children’s commitment rates and family sorting knowledge. Our study supports the bidirectional theory of parent-child relationships, and sheds new light on the intergenerational influences of commitment-related interventions in recycling for children and their families.
... Or to put it differently, it seems naturally that the attempt to persuade people to protect the environment is most likely supported when it is in their own interest. However, the appeal of self-interested values to encourage proenvironmental behavior might limit other potential positive spillovers to other pro-environmental actions and instead increase other self-interested behaviors (Evans et al., 2013, Thøgersen andCrompton, 2009). However, this effect is negligible if the primary scope is to enhance certain pro-environmental behavior in the short-term. ...
Article
The soaring economic development of export activities of handicrafts centralized in emerging urban regions in Vietnam leads to an increase in the occurrence of diseases and threats to ecological systems induced by water pollution. We design a discrete choice experiment to elicit the willingness-to-pay of handicraft enterprises to restore the environment and to reduce health risks from polluted wastewater through water quality improvement under different scenarios. Estimates from the latent class model reveal that entrepreneurs strongly value the provision of wastewater treatment services and mostly reduce the risk of sickness caused by water pollution. Entrepreneurs' preferences to pay for environmental remediation seems to vary according to their environmental awareness and educational background.
... Or to put it differently, it seems naturally that the attempt to persuade people to protect the environment is most likely supported when it is in their own interest. However, the appeal of self-interested values to encourage proenvironmental behavior might limit other potential positive spillovers to other pro-environmental actions and instead increase other self-interested behaviors (Evans et al., 2013, Thøgersen andCrompton, 2009). However, this effect is negligible if the primary scope is to enhance certain pro-environmental behavior in the short-term. ...
Preprint
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The soaring economic development of export activities of handicrafts centralized in emerging urban regions in Vietnam has accelerated the increase in the occurrence of diseases and threats to ecosystems induced by water pollution. We design a discrete choice experiment to elicit the willingness-to-pay of handicraft enterprises to restore the environment and to diminish health risks from polluted wastewater through water quality improvement under different scenarios. Estimates from five latent classes reveal that one half of entrepreneurs strongly value the provision of wastewater treatment services and their decisions are mostly driven by preferences to reduce the risk of sickness caused by water pollution. This finding lends support to the argument that self-interested preferences predominate pro-environmental behavior in the readiness to pay for water quality services. While entrepreneurs' preferences attributed to the ecological remediation seem to vary according to their educational background, the status-quo group shows a low degree of environmental awareness. This divergent behavioral pattern suggests that the design of wastewater management policies requires a mixture of measures that aim on different groups of individuals pursuing economic incentives and the creation of awareness. The soaring economic development of export activities of handicrafts centralized in emerging urban regions in Vietnam has accelerated the increase in the occurrence of diseases and threats to ecosystems induced by water pollution. We design a discrete choice experiment to elicit the willingness-to-pay of handicraft enterprises to restore the environment and to diminish health risks from polluted wastewater through water quality improvement under different scenarios. Estimates from five latent classes reveal that one half of entrepreneurs strongly value the provision of wastewater treatment services and their decisions are mostly driven by preferences to reduce the risk of sickness caused by water pollution. This finding lends support to the argument that self-interested preferences predominate pro-environmental behavior in the readiness to pay for water quality services. While entrepreneurs' preferences attributed to the ecological remediation seem to vary according to their educational background, the status-quo group shows a low degree of environmental awareness. This divergent behavioral pattern suggests that the design of wastewater management policies requires a mixture of measures that aim on different groups of individuals pursuing economic incentives and the creation of awareness.
Article
This study aims to reveal Chinese consumers' willingness to pay for Green manure-rice and its determinants by conducting an information intervention experiment. Results first showed that consumers' willingness to pay before and after the information intervention was 7.9 CNY/kg and 12.1CNY/kg, which was 2.6 CNY/kg and 6.8 CNY/kg premium than that of conventional rice, respectively. This finding highlights the necessity of eliminating information asymmetry in the pro-environmental food market through external information supply. Afterwards, the decision mechanism by which consumers pay for Green manure-rice was explored. The main conclusions are as follows. First, both subjective self-evaluation and environmental literacy had a positive and significant impact on consumer premium. This finding provides policymakers with the enlightenment that it is feasible to raise consumer premium by actively guiding their subjective self-evaluation and fostering their environmental literacy. Second, the moderating effect of information intervention on consumer awareness of Green manure-rice attributes was identified. This result not only emphasizes the positive role of food attribute labeling in guiding consumers’ payment, but also further verifies the effectiveness of information strategy in promoting the development of Green manure-rice market. Third, information intervention narrowed the gap of payments between different consumer groups, which provides instrumental support for stabilizing the Green manure-rice market. These results are of great importance for both guiding the update of pro-environmental food market and promoting paddy agricultural system innovation in China.
Chapter
Despite building a clear and compelling message about the importance of conserving biodiversity and what we risk in depleting it, meaningful engagement from implicated stakeholders remains limited. Past studies have examined the gap between the possession of environmental knowledge and displaying behavior that would help to conserve it. Essentially, increasing awareness and interest in environmental issues does not ensure that individuals will make the necessary changes in behaviours detrimental to biological conservation. This is a concern as failure to meaningfully engage the public into acting on conservation strategies will hamper efforts to curb biodiversity loss. Herein the authors investigate why action to address biodiversity loss has been slow or deficient in many jurisdictions. The authors draw from models and theories developed in health and social sciences to provide context to the key factors that prevent action and propose steps that could be taken to stimulate it.
Chapter
Zur Systematisierung und Analyse von energetischen Sanierungsentscheidungen wird in Anlehnung an die Konsumentenforschung ein Prozessmodell mit den Phasen Problemerkenntnis, Informationssuche, Bewertung von Alternativen, Umsetzung und Nutzung sowie Beurteilung verwendet. Zudem wird die Rolle der Energieberatung als Instrument zur Steigerung der Sanierungsrate in den Phasen des Entscheidungsprozesses untersucht.
Article
Due to the public characteristics of the ecological environment, there is an inevitable “free-rider” defect in the pro-environmental behaviors. Therefore, it is essential to study residents' pro-environmental behaviors to guide them to adopt pro-environmental behaviors actively. In the field of environmental behavior, recent studies have identified a phenomenon called “behavior spillover.” Research in this field is still in its infancy. The related research has significant single characteristic: most of them are based on a single theory to explain the spillover effect of pro-environmental behavior. This paper takes the case of D Street in Hangzhou City, Zhejiang Province, China to research the internal mechanism of positive spillover effects of pro-environmental behaviors. This street is transitioning from not attaching importance to environmental protection to attaching importance to environmental protection, and thus it is a pioneering, representative, and practical sample. This paper takes the theory of planned behavior and cognitive balance theory involving cognition, emotion, and behavior as basic theoretical tools and introduces parallel and chain mediation approaches to cognitive and emotional pathways, in combination with other theories, to examine the factors influencing initial environmental participation behavior on subsequent willingness to participate in a comprehensive way. The study found that in addition to the direct effect environmental protection participation behavior has on subsequent participation willingness, our study found three pathways from Pro-environmental Behaviors to willingness, namely: (1) participating behavior → knowledge → willingness, (2) participating behavior → pleasure → willingness, and (3) participating behavior → knowledge → pleasure → willingness. This paper's aim is to theoretically confirm the complex intermediary mechanism of the positive spillover effect of pro-environmental behavior and to highlight the need to strengthen publicity and education so that residents can appreciate the necessity of environmental protection knowledge and internalize knowledge into positive, stable, and continuous emotions and attitudes, so as to promote their spontaneous environmental protection participation behavior.
Article
Do people behave consistently when it comes to sustainability? With few exceptions, most previous studies of sustainable investment behavior rely on survey responses. Numerous studies have noted, however, that peoples talk is often cheap when it comes to sustainable choices. We use a financially incentivized choice to study the non-investment-related sustainable behavior of the clients of three German robo advisors and relate it to their investment decisions. We find that sustainable consumption translates into a higher likelihood of choosing a portfolio following a sustainable investment strategy among the clients of a digital wealth manager that offers both conventional and sustainable investments. Sustainable consumption also translates into a particularly strong interest in the launch of sustainable investment strategies among the clients of a conventional robo advisor. The provision of sustainable investment strategies can, next to performance and costs, be a selling point for a digital wealth manager. However, our results show that self-reported sustainable consumer behavior not backed up by pertinent actions is not significantly related to sustainable investment choices. Our results lend further support to the notion that studying sustainability in terms of actual choices is crucial. We provide guidance to practitioners in the financial industry on identifying investors with a potential interest in sustainable investments.
Article
The uptake of actions to mitigate climate change at the household level might crowd out subsequent policy at the national level, which is problematic because national policy often has a larger mitigation potential than individual household measures. This study analyses crowding out between the uptake of low-cost actions and the support for national climate change policy in the agricultural sector. In the experimental set-up, survey respondents were primed to think about the implementation of low-cost mitigation practices and subsequently asked to express support for national mitigation policy. The results show a crowding-out effect between individual mitigation measures and support for national policy. Individuals with high levels of worry show a stronger crowding out effect. This study contributes to building understanding of when and why crowding out occurs in order to help frame and communicate future climate change policy.
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Non-technical summary. Scaling sustainable behaviour change means addressing politics, power and social justice to tackle the uneven distribution of responsibility and agency for climate action, within and between societies. This requires a holistic understanding of behaviour that bridges the 'individual' and 'systemic', and acknowledges the need for absolute emissions reductions, especially by high-consuming groups, and in key 'hotspots' of polluting activity, namely, travel, diet and housing. It counters the dominant focus on individuals and households, in favour of a differentiated, but collective approach, driven by bold climate governance and social mobilisation to reorient institutions and behaviour towards just transitions, sufficiency and wellbeing. Technical summary. Sustainable behaviour change has been rising up the climate policy agenda as it becomes increasingly clear that far-reaching changes in lifestyles will be required, alongside shifts in policy, service provision and technological innovation, if we are to avoid dangerous levels of global heating. In this paper, we review different approaches to behaviour change from economics, psychology, sociology and political economy, to explore the neglected question of scalability, and identify critical points of leverage that challenge the dominant emphasis on individual responsibility. Although politically contentious and challenging to implement, in order to achieve the ambitious target of keeping warming below 1.5 degrees, we propose urgent structural interventions are necessary at all points within an ecosystem of transformation, and highlight five key spheres for action: a 'strong' sustainability pathway; pursuing just transitions (via changes to work, income and infrastructure); rebalancing political institutions to expand spaces for citizens vis-à-vis elite incumbents; focusing on high polluting actors and activities; and supporting social mobilisation. We call for a move away from linear and 'shallow' understandings of behaviour change, dominated by traditional behavioural and mainstreaming approaches, towards a 'deep', contextualised and dynamic view of scaling as a transformative process of multiple feedbacks and learning loops between individuals and systems, engaged in a mutually reinforcing 'spiral of sustainability'. Social media summary box. Scaling behaviour change means addressing power and politics: challenging polluter elites and providing affordable and sustainable services for all. © The Author(s), 2021. Published by Cambridge University Press. This is an Open Access article, distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution licence (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/), which permits unrestricted re-use, distribution and reproduction, provided the original article is properly cited.
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The negative anthropogenic impacts upon the world ocean are accelerating. Marine citizenship has been proposed as a policy channel to work at an individual level of responsibility to improve marine environmental health and contribute to the achievement of a sustainable future. This interdisciplinary research reflects the principles of post-normal science, through its epistemologically pragmatic and pluralist approach to broadening our understanding of marine citizenship. Drawing on environmental psychology, human geography, environmental law, green political theory, and sociology, this research considers marine citizenship according to four key research questions: i) What is marine citizenship and who participates in it? ii) How are institutional policy frameworks of marine citizenship understood, interpreted and experienced by participants? iii) How do motivational and value-based factors influence marine citizenship choices? And iv) How do place-related factors influence the practice of marine citizenship? Mixed methods were used to bring together a range of data and maximise their thesis contribution. The research design consisted of an online survey of active marine citizens reached via three case studies: two community marine groups and one national citizen science project. This was followed by ethnographic observation of marine citizenship in practice and open-ended interview of purposively selected participants, to maximise insight into diversity of marine citizens and gain in-depth qualitative data. The results provide a number of novel insights into the conception and motivation of marine citizenship. In my research, prevailing interpretations of marine citizenship as a set of pro-environmental behaviours are extended by situating the concept within citizenship theory. Here I give additional focus to the understanding of marine citizenship as the right to construct and transform society’s relationship with the ocean, and how public participation in marine decision-making is perceived as being under-served by legislation and procedure. My data show that marine citizenship is influenced by a complex of interacting variables and that there is no one kind of person who becomes a marine citizen. Yet environmental identity, stimulation and conformity basic human values, climate change concern, place attachment and, in particular, place dependency are important factors for ‘thicker’ marine citizenship. The research uncovered a human affinity with the ocean through unique marine place attachment, which I call thalassophilia. These findings challenge normative approaches to pro-environmental behaviour, which frequently focus on environmental education, information, and awareness raising. Creating opportunities for marine experiences promotes attachment to the ocean and in turn ‘thicker’ marine citizenship. The results collectively point to a marine identity, formed through ocean connectedness and enabled by favourable socio-economic and policy conditions. When associated with good ocean health, marine identity can underpin and be reinforced by marine citizenship. Marine citizenship coincides with broader environmental and civic citizenship; therefore marine experience opportunities may contribute to wider acceptance of policy and public participation in the paradigmatic change now facing humans, as we attempt to mitigate and adapt to climate change in the coming years.
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Publisher Summary Individuals come to “know” their own attitudes, emotions, and other internal states partially by inferring them from observations of their own overt behavior and/ or the circumstances in which this behavior occurs. Thus, to the extent that internal cues are weak, ambiguous, or uninterpretable, the individual is functionally in the same position as an outside observer, an observer who must necessarily rely upon those same external cues to infer the individual's inner states. This chapter traces the conceptual antecedents and empirical consequences of these propositions, attempts to place the theory in a slightly enlarged frame of reference, and clarifies just what phenomena the theory can and cannot account for in the rapidly growing experimental literature of self-attribution phenomena. Several experiments and paradigms from the cognitive dissonance literature are amenable to self-perception interpretations. But precisely because such experiments are subject to alternative interpretations, they cannot be used as unequivocal evidence for self-perception theory. The reinterpretation of cognitive dissonance phenomena and other self-perception phenomena have been discussed. The chapter highlights some differences between self-perception and interpersonal perception and shift of paradigm in social psychology. It discusses some unsolved problems, such as the conceptual status of noncognitive response classes and the strategy of functional analysis.
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Evaluated the impact of the perceived level of difficulty of environmental behaviours on the magnitude of the relationship between environmental self-determination and the occurrence of environmental behaviours. 444 undergraduates (aged 17–50 yrs) completed the Motivation Toward the Environment Scale (L. G. Pelletier et al, in press), along with self-report measures of environmental behaviours and perceived difficulty of environmental behaviours. Three types of environmental behaviours were examined: recycling, purchasing environmentally-friendly products, and educating oneself as to what can be done for the environment. It was hypothesized that the level of self-determination of environmental motivation significantly predicts the occurrence of environmental behaviours. Data were subjected to structural equation modeling analyzes. Results support the proposed hypothesis. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
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A measure of preference for consistency (the PFC Scale) was developed. In three construct validation experiments, scores on the PFC successfully predicted individuals who would and would not be susceptible to a set of standard consistency-based effects: cognitive balance, foot in the door, and dissonance. The pattern of results in each of the experiments suggested the type of consistency that the PFC measures: a tendency to base one's responses to incoming stimuli on the implications of existing (prior entry) variables, such as previous expectancies, commitments, and choices. A surprisingly large percentage (at least half) of our participants showed no strong inherent preference for consistency—a finding that may explain the frequent failure to detect or replicate (a) traditional consistency effects and (b) a wide variety of other experimental phenomena. (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
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Measurement of ecological behavior across different domains has been troublesome. The present paper argues that the lack of agreement in measuring general ecological behavior may be due to the measurement approach that is commonly used. An ecological behavior measure should be grounded on a probabilistic measurement approach that takes the important features of ecological behavior into consideration. Such a measure was developed in a survey study of 445 members of 2 Swiss transportation associations. Three types of ecological behavior measures were included: a general measure, 3 multiple-item measures, and 3 single-item measures. Results are controlled for social desirability effects. Reliability, internal consistency, and validity scores indicate that a probabilistic measurement approach can measure general ecological behavior accurately and unidimensionally.
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This article contends that while striving to promote environmentallyresponsible behavior, we have focused attention too narrowly on just two classes of motives. There is a need to expand the range of motives available to practitioners and to provide a framework within which motives can be evaluated for both their immediate and long-term effectiveness. The article then examines a strategy for promoting environmentally responsible behavior that has significant potential. This strategy is based on a particular form of motivation called intrinsic satisfaction. Nine studies are reviewed that have outlined the structure of intrinsic satisfaction. A key theme discussed is the human inclination for competence. This fundamental human concern is shown to have both a general form and a resource-specific version.
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Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to develop and apply a framework for understanding consumer responses to ecolabelling. Design/methodology/approach: From a consumer perspective, ecolabels are tools for supporting decision making with regard to environmentally significant products. The paper proposes an adoption of innovation framework for understanding consumer responses. The framework is applied in a mall-intercept survey of the early adoption of a new ecolabel, the MSC label for sustainable fishery, in Denmark. Findings: Early adopters of a new ecolabel mostly employ a high effort adoption process. Starting the adoption process depends on both motivation (intention to buy sustainable fish products) and ability (issue-relevant knowledge). Whether and how quickly the consumer completes the adoption depends on his or her motivation, past experience with using ecolabels, and trust in the endorsing organisation. Research limitations/implications: Environmental and product-related factors did not differ between respondents. Hence, a complete account of the importance of these factors for the adoption and (especially) diffusion of the label is not provided. Practical implications: Consumers scoring highly on both issue-relevant knowledge and motivation are the most likely innovators and early adopters. Their high level of expertise means that they do not need a lot of explanation for understanding the label and its self-relevance and their strong motivation means that they will search for more if they need it (and if it is not too difficult to get). Originality/value: The paper makes both a conceptual and an empirical contribution, which are of value both to practitioners (ecolabel promoters and users) and to research on ecolabel effectiveness.
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In the contingent valuation method for the valuation of public goods, survey respondents are asked to indicate the amount they are willing to pay (WTP) for the provision of a good. We contrast economic and psychological analyses of WTP and describe a study in which respondents indicated their WTP to prevent or to remedy threats to public health or to the environment, attributed either to human or to natural causes. WTP was significantly higher when the cause of a harm was human, though the effect was not large. The means of WTP for 16 issues were highly correlated with the means of other measures of attitude, including a simple rating of the importance of the threat. The responses are better described as expressions of attitudes than as indications of economic value, contrary to the assumptions of the contingent valuation method.
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The means applied to promote environmentally friendly behavior need to be evaluated. This study investigates the possibility that actions meant to improve recycling may have unintended consequences in fields other than the target behavior. The relation between self-reported environmental behaviors in several sectors is studied, with particular attention given to the question of whether increased recycling may develop into a compensatory behavior for less environmentally friendly behavior elsewhere. Results from a survey, including approximately 1,500 Norwegian consumers, are presented. No tendencies toward compensatory behavior are detected. Furthermore, the survey does not indicate that the introduction of measures meant to increase recycling brings increased attitudinal support for compensatory behavior. At the same time, the survey supports the view that there is no “general” environmental behavior among consumers. On the other hand, the correlations between different behaviors increase when the behaviors in question become more similar.
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This article is offered in a spirit of collaboration with other researchers wishing to further understanding of emotional engagement in prompting pro-environmental behaviour change. It describes (1) experiences that have prompted individuals to reduce the environmental impact of their lifestyles through attitudinal and behavioural change, and (2) how these experiences relate to their wider beliefs, meanings and convictions. The research from which these finding are drawn hypothesises that pro-environmental behaviour change is more likely to endure in the long term if it is rooted in, and driven by, significant and meaningful experience--if a person's 'heart is in it'--and, conversely, that if behaviour changes in reaction to regulations, incentives and/or anxiety alone, it is more likely to be 'skin deep', temporary and prone to revert back to old habits. (For more on the theoretical background to this, see Maiteny, 2000b, 2002).
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The issue of consistency and inconsistency in environmentally responsible behavior (ERB), as reflected in the correlations between different ERBs, is discussed in the light of social-psychological theories suggesting that most people desire to behave consistently. It is argued that except in cases where different ERBs are substitutes or at least one of them is totally determined by idiosyncratic conditions the desire to behave consistently should lead to ERBs being positively correlated. However, the correlation may be attenuated by the influence of idiosyncratic conditions (considered “noise” in this context) and measurement error and it is moderated by perceived dissimilarity between the behaviors and by the (moral) importance of behaving in a responsible way towards the environment. These propositions are tested (and confirmed) by means of a mall-intercept survey of ordinary Danish shoppers. Implications for the promotion of a generalized ERB pattern are discussed.
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Prior research often emphasized a stimulus-based or bottom-up view of product category repre- sentations. In contrast, we emphasize a more purposeful, top-down perspective and examine categories that consumers might construct in the service of salient (i.e., highly accessible) goals. Specifically, we investigate how the point of view imposed by salient consumer goals might af- fect category representations assessed by participants' similarity judgments of food products. A key factor in our study is that we examine both individual and situational sources of variability in goal salience. In addition, we also vary the surface-level, visual resemblance of the stimulus pairs of foods used in the study. The results suggest that personal goals (e.g., health) and situa- tional goals (e.g., convenience) act in conjunction and exert a systematic impact on category representations. Both types of goals, when salient, enhanced the perceived similarity of goal-ap- propriate products and reduced the similarity of product pairs when only one product was ideal for the particular goal. The similarity-enhancing effect was most pronounced when the surface resemblance between the products was low, and the similarity-diminishing effect was more ap- parent when surface resemblance was high. Implications are discussed for current theoretical assumptions regarding categorization in consumer research.
A computerized survey (n = 1658) in The Netherlands shows that consumers attribute more proenvironmental behavior and motivation, but less ability, to themselves than to other households, the government, agriculture, and industry. Consumers believe that ability has a stronger effect, and motivation a weaker effect, on their own than on others' behavior. In addition, consumers' own behavior is influenced by the behavior and ability of other households. The authors offer implications for public policy and marketing communications.
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We tested the self-perception explanation of the foot-in-the-door effect by manipulating self-perceived helpfulness and assessing self-concept. Participants given $1 to sign a homelessness petition were less likely to see themselves as altruistic than participants not given the monetary incentive. The paid participants also complied less often with a request to work on a canned food drive 2 days later than unpaid participants. In contrast, participants told they were helpful individuals were more likely to see themselves as altruistic and were more likely to volunteer for the food drive than unlabeled participants. Mediation analyses provide evidence that changes in self-concept underlie a successful foot-in-the-door manipulation and support the self-perception explanation for the foot-in-the-door effect.
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It is difficult for political leaders to take action on climate change at the scale and speed necessary. Neither governments, businesses nor individuals acting alone will be able to secure more decisive action by political leaders. Only the third sector can do this, and a far greater mobilisation will be needed to create the social foundations for action. The four key characteristics of a successful mobilisation by the third sector are outlined: national leadership by a diverse coalition of groups; action at community level; a mass movement 'living differently and demanding more and mobilisation across borders.
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In a paper presented at the University of Michigan Institute for Social Research Founder's Day Symposium in honor of Dorian Cartwright, the author traces the central idea of cognitive consistency theories. It is noted that although the idea of cognitive inconsistency intrinsically requires a solution, it has been neglected in psychology. Literature on the inconsistency reduction motive is analyzed, and the findings show that from 1958 through the early 1960's, steady mentions of this topic occurred in the Annual Review of Psychology but that by 1971, the median of mentions had fallen to zero. By the end of the 1970's and especially in the last 5 yrs, the median of mentions has risen to a level higher than that during the early 1960's. Differences in emphases in research on cognitive consistency and dissonance during these years are discussed, and their transformation into the tenets of balance theory is examined. G. Mandler's (1975), D. Kahneman and A. Tversky's (1982), and the author's recent views on emotions are used to assess the current status of consistency theory. A theoretical framework for reinterpreting and realistically orienting the previous consistency literature is presented. Comments on the paper by R. B. Zajonc and F. Harary are included. (33 ref) (PsycINFO Database Record (c) 2012 APA, all rights reserved)
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In a field experiment on water conservation, we aroused dissonance in patrons of the campus recreation facility by making them feel hypocritical about their showering habits. Using a 2 × 2 factorial design, we manipulated subjects “‘mindfulness” that they had sometimes wasted water while showering, and then varied whether they made a “public commitment” urging other people to take shorter showers. The “hypocrisy” condition-in which subjects made the public commitment after being reminded of their past behavior-was expected to be dissonance-arousing, thereby motivating subjects to increase their efforts to conserve water. The results were consistent with this reasoning. Compared to controls, subjects in the hypocrisy condition took significantly shorter showers. Subjects who were merely reminded that they had wasted water, or who only made the public commitment, did not take shorter showers than control subjects. The findings have implications for using cognitive dissonance as means of changing behavior in applied settings, especially those in which people already support the desired goal, but their behavior is not consistent with those beliefs.
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The preference that incoming information be consistent with pre-existing attitudes, cognitions, and beliefs is referred to as the preference for consistency. Based on the assumption that inconsistency is emotionally upsetting, we expected a preference for consistency to be associated with the: (a) experience of emotional upset and (b) motivation to reduce emotional upset. In addition, we expected a preference for consistency to grow with age because avoiding emotional disruption becomes a more salient motivation with increasing age. A study of 269 individuals between 18 and over 80 years of age confirmed these predictions. We conclude that, because of a heightened motive for emotional harmony, older individuals are especially likely to prefer consistent activities, cognitions, and people.
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Attaining a sustainable future will involve dramatic changes to contemporary lifestyles. In order to promote these changes effectively it is essential to have a clear comprehension of the variables characteristic of individuals who engage in responsible environmental behavior. To this end, this paper presents three studies. The first study illustrates that no common set of variables can be used to predict a wide range of proenvironmental activity. The second study clarifies the factors that predict householders' composting, while the third study investigates householders who invest in energy efficiency.
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This study investigated the role of attitude strength as a moderator variable with regard to the direction of the relation between attitudes and behavior. The hypothesis was tested that strong attitudes guide behavior, whereas weak attitudes follow behavior in accordance with self-perception principles. The study (N = 106) consisted of two sessions. In session 1, attitudes and attitude strength (certainty, importance, centrality) towards Greenpeace were measured. One week later, participants returned to the laboratory (session 2) and were given the opportunity to donate money to Greenpeace. After the participants' decision to donate money or not, attitudes towards Greenpeace were measured again. The results were consistent with the predictions. First, strong attitudes were more predictive of donation behavior than weak attitudes. Moreover, session 2 attitudes of weak attitude participants were influenced by their donation behavior, whereas no such effect was found among strong attitude participants. Finally, strong attitudes were also found to be more stable over time than weak attitudes. The results provide a complete overview of the moderating role of attitude strength with regard to the bi-directional attitude-behavior relationship. Results are discussed in the light of attitude retrieval versus attitude-construction processes. Copyright © 2002 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.