Green intentions under the blue flag: exploring differences in EU consumers’ willingness to pay more for environmentally-friendly products

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Authors

External organisations

  • Queen Mary University of London
  • University of Southampton

Abstract

Recent research on consumer social responsibility highlights the need to examine psychological drivers of environmentally-friendly consumption choices in a global context. This paper investigates consumers’ willingness to pay more (WTP) for environmentally-friendly products across 28 European Union (EU) countries, using a sample of 21,514 consumers. A Multigroup Structural Equation Modeling analysis reveals significantly different patterns and relationships, in how (a) subjective knowledge about the product’s environmental impact, (b) environmental product attitudes and (c) the perceived importance of the products’ environmental impact influence consumers’ WTP more for environmentally-friendly products across countries. The hypothesized model predicts WTP for 20 out of 28 countries and the findings show that a ‘one-fits-all’ approach is inadequate in capturing the heterogeneity of EU consumers. Hosfstede’s cultural dimensions of uncertainty tolerance and individualism explain differences in WTP for environmentally-friendly products across EU countries. Business, marketing communications, and policy making implications are discussed.

Details

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)205–222
JournalBusiness Ethics: A European Review
Volume26
Issue number3
Early online date14 Jul 2017
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2017

Keywords

  • European Union consumers, cultural dimensions, cross-country comparison, willingness to pay more, environmentally-friendly products, attitudes