Department of Management

Providing feedback as a means to empower householders to save electricity: A social cognitive approach

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Studies show that the electricity consumption in private households could be substantially reduced (5 - 25%) without the loss of comfort by using best practice technology and care (Birch & Krogboe A/S, 2004). A number of reasons for the squandering of electricity have been pointed out: the force of habit, lack of attention towards the issue, lack of motivation due to an unfavorable cost/benefit ratio, uncertainty about the environmental consequences of the squandering of electricity and about the effects of possible conservation efforts. Based on Bandura's (1986) social cognitive theory, this paper outlines a conceptual framework for understanding private consumers' (lack of) energy saving effort. The framework is tested based on a sample of Danish private electricity consumers and it is concluded that the impediments that now makes electricity saving difficult are a key action point. It is proposed that detailed feedback about the household's electricity consumption is a means to both change the environment to be more facilitating for energy saving and empowers householders to be more effective in their striving towards this goal. Technological and procedural prerequisites for an effective feedback intervention are discussed.
Original languageEnglish
Publication year2008
Publication statusPublished - 2008
Event29th International Congress of Psychology - Berlin, Germany
Duration: 20 Jul 200825 Jul 2008


Conference29th International Congress of Psychology

    Research areas

  • Electricity consumption, Environmental behaviour

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ID: 46043