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EMAC 2023 Annual

Referencing Self-Nature Connection rather than just Nature Increases the Efficiency of Pro-Environmental Interventions on Consumer Behaviors

Published: May 24, 2023


Leila Rahmani, University of Lausanne; Simona Haasova, University of Lausanne; Sandor Czellar, University of Lausanne; Valentina Clergue, Ecole Hôtelière de Lausanne; Christian Martin, Maynooth University


Today more than ever, it is crucial to curb the environmental impact of consumer behaviors. A popular strategy (by researchers, social marketers and practitioners) seems to use nature references of different kinds. However, as of yet, no theory is available on the effectiveness of different kinds of nature reference-based interventions. We address this gap in the literature by proposing that interventions based on self-nature connection (conceptualized in the literature as environmental identity) are more effective than interventions based on Nature (i.e., contact with or exposure to nature) alone. We have conducted 5 studies (laboratory and online experiments) using different types of manipulations that confirmed the effectiveness of our proposed strategy. Thus, our findings carry substantial implications in the way these interventions should be framed and therefore, offer suggestions for educators, policy makers and marketers interested to promote pro-environmental behaviors.