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Personal Values, Green Self-identity and Electric Car Adoption

Camilla Barbarossa, Patrick De Pelsmacker, Ingrid Moons
Ecological economics 2017 v.140 pp. 190-200
automobiles, ethics, models, motivation, surveys, Belgium, Denmark, Italy
Personal values, green self-identity and ethical motives have been widely studied as important, but mostly separate, predictors of pro-environmental behaviors. Scholars call for more research on the combined effects of these variables, to explain pro-environmental behavior. In this regard, this study presents a model of electric car adoption intention, in which personal values determine green self-identity, which in turn influences consumer intention to adopt electric cars directly and also indirectly via ethical motives of ecological care and moral obligation. Second, this work explores how personal values moderate the relationships between green self-identity, ecological care, moral obligation and electric car adoption intention.Data were collected through a survey in a sample of 2005 car drivers residing in Belgium, Denmark and Italy. Results confirm that four value domains (i.e., self-transcendence, self-enhancement, openness-to-change and conservation) influence green self-identity, which in turn determines consumer intention to adopt electric cars both directly and indirectly via ecological care and moral obligation motivations. Furthermore, consumers who find self-transcendent and openness-to-change values important tend to express their green self-identity directly into intentions and through moral obligation evaluations. Conversely, individuals who find self-enhancement values important express their green self-identity directly into intentions, while they take the ecological and moral considerations to behave green less into account. Finally, consumers who find conservation values important translate their green self-identity less into intentions to adopt electric cars, and tend to consider less the ecological and moral aspects of consumption choices.