Research Scholar(IIPS, DAVV, Indore)
**Dr. Preeti Singh
Reader, IIPS, DAVV, Indore
The Theory of Planned Behavior, based on the value – attitude – behavior hierarchy, has been proven as a reliable instrument for measuring green purchasing behavior. This study examines the application of a sub-section of Theory of Planned Behavior, namely the measurement of Attitudes towards Green Purchases of management students in Jabalpur City. Ecological affect has a greater impact on their attitude formation than does Ecological Knowledge. To check if this is also true for these consumers, management students (n=41) were surveyed to measure their ecological affect, ecological knowledge and attitudes towards green purchases. Students with high ecological affect showed a statistically significant difference on their attitudes towards green purchases score than the students with low ecological affect. Ecological knowledge level did not show a significant difference in attitudes towards green purchases. Differences between ecological knowledge and ecological affect and suggestions for future research are discussed.
Keywords: Planned Behaviour, Green Awareness, Green Purchase, Ecological Knowledge, Purchase Attitude.
Consumer Attitude towards ‘Green’ Purchases
Sustainable energy, organic food, green technology and green products are buzzwords in popular culture, consumer publications and business school course outlines today. Both government and market researchers alike have been studying the reasons consumers purchase green products or make other environmentally friendly decisions. Providing for the environmental concerns of customers is a win-win strategy for the planet and the firm. Green consumers have been shown to be willing to pay a higher price for environmentally friendly products (Laroche, Bergeron & Barbaro-Forleo, 2001; Peattie, 2001), which is a huge opportunity for companies as well as governments looking to make eco-friendly policy changes. The knowledge of the existence of these green buyers is good news for the interested parties, but the task of learning ‘who they are’ becomes greatly important. Even more important might be finding out how consumers can be transformed into green purchasers. When considering all of the factors that make encouraging a desired behavior in consumers difficult, including limited financial resources, understanding what influences consumers’ decisions to purchase green products would be extremely valuable to policy makers and marketers alike.
Chang & Lau (Chang & Lau, 2001) showed that the Theory of Planned Behavior (TPB) model demonstrated a satisfactory level of external validity in measuring the Green Purchase Behavior (GPB) of consumers. At its most basic level, the theory postulates that an individual’s behavior is determined by her behavioral intention to perform that behavior. Behavioral intention is a function of the individual’s attitude toward the behavior, subjective norm and perceived behavioral control. Figure 1 depicts the theory graphically.
Figure 1. Graphical Representation of the Theory of Planned Behavior
The intention of the above mentioned study was to seek a better understanding of the various factors that determine the performance of environmentally responsible acts. Studies have suggested that because purchasing green products is a decision (Chang, 2001), an individual’s attitude greatly affects his willingness to perform that action. Two key determinants of attitudes are affect and cognition, or knowledge (Chang, 2001). In the present situation these are viewed in an ecological way. Ecological Affect (EA) refers to a person viewing him or herself in a particular situation or being...