Theorizing the behavioral dimension of energy consumption: energy efficiency and the value-action gap

Brown, Marilyn A and Sovacool, Benjamin (2018) Theorizing the behavioral dimension of energy consumption: energy efficiency and the value-action gap. In: Davidson, Debra J and Gross, Matthias (eds.) Oxford handbook of energy and society. Oxford Handbooks . Oxford University Press, New York, USA, pp. 201-222. ISBN 9780190633851

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Abstract

This chapter focuses on the well-documented misalignment between energy-related behaviors and the personal values of consumers, which has become a major source of angst among policymakers. Despite widespread pro-environmental or green attitudes, consumers frequently purchase non-green alternatives. The chapter identifies 50 theoretical approaches that can be divided almost equally into two types: those that emphasize beliefs, attitudes, and values; and those that also consider contextual factors and social norms. Three principles of intervention are recommended: provide credible and targeted information at points of decision; identify and address the key factors inhibiting and promoting the target behaviors in particular populations; and rigorously evaluate programs to provide credible estimates of impact and opportunities for improvement. The chapter recommends that research on the value-action gap be expanded beyond the traditional focus on individuals to include decision-making units such as households, boards of directors, commercial buying units, and government procurement groups.

Item Type: Book Section
Schools and Departments: University of Sussex Business School > SPRU - Science Policy Research Unit
Depositing User: Ellie Leftley
Date Deposited: 17 Sep 2018 14:42
Last Modified: 01 Jul 2020 01:00
URI: http://sro.sussex.ac.uk/id/eprint/78830

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