Group-level motives for alcohol consumption in a young adult sample

Ryan McAndrew, Judy Drennan, Rebekah Russell-Bennett, Sharyn Rundle-Thiele

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


Purpose: Collective motives for alcohol consumption represent a nascent field, with individual-level attributes, peer pressure and broad-level environmental elements being at the forefront of research. The purpose of this paper is to explore the role of friendships in the context of alcohol consumption and determine what group-level motives exist for alcohol consumption. Design/methodology/approach: Semi-structured interviews were conducted with 18 participants aged 18–30, these discussed the role the participant’s friendship group played in alcohol consumption and helped to elucidate what collective and group-level motives existed. Findings: Group-level motives can steer a collective’s alcohol consumption by either endorsing it or degrading it, the findings revealed four group-level motives: these were, competition, conformity, hedonism, with opportunity cost receptiveness acting as a buffer. Research limitations/implications: The small sample and qualitative nature of the study means external validity still needs to be established to generalize the research to other audiences. Practical implications: By unpacking group-level motives researchers can develop group-level strategies and match specialized interventions with the right priority group. Originality/value: This paper is the first to address group-level motives for alcohol consumption and makes an important contribution to understanding how group-level factors can impact individuals.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)18-34
Number of pages17
JournalHealth Education
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 23 Jan 2019
Externally publishedYes


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