Measuring cultural values and beliefs about environment to identify their role in climate change responses

Jennifer Price, Iain WALKER, Fabio Boschetti

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

66 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Cultural perspectives shape responses to climate change. This research examines 'myths of physical nature' outlined in cultural theory. Patterns of values and beliefs about the environment are described as 'cultural biases', which legitimize four ways of life - worldviews. We test whether cultural biases about the environment have the same structure as those about society. Study 1 details sound psychometric measures developed through a survey of Australians (n=290). Study 2 replicates the measures (n=5081), and demonstrates their predictive validity in relation to climate change beliefs and self-reported pro-environmental behaviors. Two negatively correlated dimensions are identified that differ from the grid-group framework. Individualistic and fatalistic perspectives frame the environment as 'elastic' to justify damaging behaviors. Hierarchical and egalitarian perspectives frame the environment as 'ductile' to justify environmental conservation. Theoretical implications and differences to established measures of environmental concern and worldview are discussed.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)8-20
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Environmental Psychology
Volume37
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2014
Externally publishedYes

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