Good things come in small packages: is there a common set of motivators for energy behaviour?


Household energy consumption can be curbed by individuals’ energy saving, yet despite many efforts, our energy consumption is not lowering. This study investigated the role of a common set of behavioural determinants for households’ intention to perform four energy-related behaviours: investing in PV cells, turning off apparatus on standby mode, showering less, and replacing old home appliances with new energyefficient ones. Behavioural determinants—energy awareness, general energy knowledge, attitudes, subjective norms, perceived behavioural control, and moral norms—were assessed in a survey (N = 83) among Swedish residents. Energy awareness was moderately correlated with energy knowledge, but not with respondents’ intentions to perform the behaviours, except for replacing home appliances. Moral norms were judged by respondents as important motivators and were a strong predictor to behavioural intentions to perform all four behaviours. Attitudes likewise were assessed as important motivators and were important predictors to all behavioural intentions except investing in PV cells, which was instead predicted by perceived behavioural control. Respondents’ assessment of beliefs underlying attitudes also differed for investing in PV cells; namely, beliefs about economic benefits were lower. Moreover, respondents felt less morally responsible for investing in PV cells. Concluding, we found no evidence that intentions to engage in four energy-saving behaviours are mediated by general energy knowledge or energy awareness. Determinants to each behaviour differed, where—surprisingly—investment in PV cells stood out as less motivated both by economic incentives and moral concerns, although moral norms were shared motivators across all four behaviours. We discuss different possible interpretations of these findings.

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@inproceedings{Stikvoort2017GoodTC, title={Good things come in small packages: is there a common set of motivators for energy behaviour?}, author={Britt Stikvoort and Peter Juslin and Cajsa Bartusch}, year={2017} }