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The Cold Shiver of Not Giving Enough: On the Social Cost of Recycling Campaigns

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  • Annegrete Bruvoll
  • Karine Nyborg

Abstract

Governments sometimes try to increase individuals’ contributions to public goods through appeals to consumer responsibility, rather than by economic incentives, for example in recycling campaigns. Using standard consumer theory, one would hardly expect such campaigns to work at all; but if consumers are motivated by norms, appeals may work through changing consumers’ perception of the normrequirement.However, increasing voluntary contributions through appeals may come at a social cost. The reason is that appeals work through imposing a heavier (perceived) responsibility on consumers. This represents a welfare loss, which is not necessarily outweighed by “warm glow” benefits.

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by University of Wisconsin Press in its journal Land Economics.

Volume (Year): 80 (2004)
Issue (Month): 4 ()
Pages:

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Handle: RePEc:uwp:landec:v:80:y:2004:i:4:p539-549

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Web page: http://le.uwpress.org/

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Cited by:
  1. Aronsson, Thomas & Sjögren, Tomas, 2006. "Optimal Income Taxation and Social Norms in the Labor Market," UmeÃ¥ Economic Studies 672, Umeå University, Department of Economics.
  2. Abbott, Andrew & Nandeibam, Shasikanta & O'Shea, Lucy, 2013. "Recycling: Social norms and warm-glow revisited," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 90(C), pages 10-18.
  3. Thomas Aronsson & Tomas Sjögren, 2010. "Optimal income taxation and social norms in the labor market," International Tax and Public Finance, Springer, vol. 17(1), pages 67-89, February.
  4. Göran Finnveden & Tomas Ekvall & Yevgeniya Arushanyan & Mattias Bisaillon & Greger Henriksson & Ulrika Gunnarsson Östling & Maria Ljunggren Söderman & Jenny Sahlin & Åsa Stenmarck & Johan Sundberg, 2013. "Policy Instruments towards a Sustainable Waste Management," Sustainability, MDPI, Open Access Journal, vol. 5(3), pages 841-881, February.
  5. Nyborg, Karine & Brekke, Kjell Arne, 2009. "Selfish Bakers, Caring Nurses? A Model of Work Motivation," HERO On line Working Paper Series 2008:1, Oslo University, Health Economics Research Programme.
  6. Nyborg, Karine, 2008. "I Don't Want to Hear About it: Rational Ignorance among Duty-Oriented Consumers," Memorandum 15/2008, Oslo University, Department of Economics.
  7. Brekke, Kjell Arne & Kipperberg, Gorm & Nyborg, Karine, 2009. "Reluctant Recyclers: Social Interaction in Responsibility Ascription," Memorandum 16/2007, Oslo University, Department of Economics.
  8. Eerola, Essi & Huhtala, Anni, 2005. "Promoting Demand for Organic Food Under Preference and Income Heterogeneity," 2005 International Congress, August 23-27, 2005, Copenhagen, Denmark 24664, European Association of Agricultural Economists.
  9. Mikołaj Czajkowski & Nick Hanley & Karine Nyborg, 2014. "Social norms, morals and self-interest as determinants of pro-environment behaviour," Working Papers 2014-17, Faculty of Economic Sciences, University of Warsaw.
  10. Essi Eerola & Anni Huhtala, 2008. "Voting for Environmental Policy Under Income and Preference Heterogeneity," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 90(1), pages 256-266.
  11. Kallbekken, Steffen & Westskog, Hege & Mideksa, Torben K., 2010. "Appeals to social norms as policy instruments to address consumption externalities," Journal of Behavioral and Experimental Economics (formerly The Journal of Socio-Economics), Elsevier, vol. 39(4), pages 447-454, August.
  12. Bohara, Alok K. & Caplan, Arthur J. & Grijalva, Therese, 2007. "The effect of experience and quantity-based pricing on the valuation of a curbside recycling program," Ecological Economics, Elsevier, vol. 64(2), pages 433-443, December.
  13. Kjell Arne Brekke & Gorm Kipperberg & Karine Nyborg, 2010. "Social Interaction in Responsibility Ascription: The Case of Household Recycling," Land Economics, University of Wisconsin Press, vol. 86(4), pages 766-784.
  14. Shigeru Matsumoto, 2014. "The Opportunity Cost of Pro-Environmental Activities: Spending Time to Promote the Environment," Journal of Family and Economic Issues, Springer, vol. 35(1), pages 119-130, March.
  15. Shigeru Matsumoto, 2014. "Spouses’ time allocation to pro-environmental activities: who is saving the environment at home?," Review of Economics of the Household, Springer, vol. 12(1), pages 159-176, March.
  16. Gorm Kipperberg & Douglas Larson, 2012. "Heterogeneous Preferences for Community Recycling Programs," Environmental & Resource Economics, European Association of Environmental and Resource Economists, vol. 53(4), pages 577-604, December.

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