On attitudes toward humanity and climate change: the effects of humanity-esteem and self-transcendence values on environmental concerns

Cheung, Wing-Yee, Luke, Michele A and Maio, Gregory R (2014) On attitudes toward humanity and climate change: the effects of humanity-esteem and self-transcendence values on environmental concerns. European Journal of Social Psychology, 44 (5). pp. 496-506. ISSN 0046-2772

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Abstract

In climate change communications, do attitudes towards humans influence pro-environmental action? If so, does it depend on endorsement of self-transcendence values? Two experiments examined these questions by assessing the effects of activating positive (vs. negative) humanity esteem on environmental motives, personal moral norms, and behavioural intentions to protect the environ- ment. The experiments tested whether the effects of humanity esteem depend on individuals’ self-transcendence values. Results indi- cated that among people who endorse self-transcendence values less strongly, those in the positive (vs. negative) humanity-esteem condition had lower ecocentrism (Experiment 1) and weaker personal norms, which led to weaker behavioural intentions to protect the environment (Experiment 2). In contrast, across the two humanity-esteem conditions, people who more strongly endorsed self- transcendence values showed stronger ecocentrism, personal moral norms, and behavioural intentions to protect the environment. Thus, for people with weaker self-transcendence values, portrayals of humanity play a role in people’s engagement with environmen- tal causes.

Item Type: Article
Schools and Departments: School of Business, Management and Economics > Business and Management
Subjects: H Social Sciences > HM Sociology > HM1001 Social psychology
Depositing User: Michele Luke
Date Deposited: 27 Aug 2014 10:07
Last Modified: 27 Aug 2014 10:07
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/49488
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