Energy Challenge

Poonam Arora, Jenn Logg, Sabine Marx, Raymond Crookes, Jessica Prata, Steven Thomas, Ximena Fonseca-Morales

The major goal of the Energy Challenge project and line of research is to better understand the social processes that underlie individual and group decision making in the context of multi-motive decisions. Specifically, this research aims to examine the influence of identity, affiliation, status and norms on decisions made by individuals and groups in social and environmental dilemmas. This research is inter-disciplinary in that it uses game theoretic paradigms to examine the influence of social structures on multi-motive decisions and, as such, furthers the theoretical boundaries in decision making from a social cognition, behavioral decision-making, and relationship perspective. Specific details for each line of research are provided below. We examined how students perceive their environmental behaviors over time using multiple surveys.

This project is currently on hold.


Major Findings

  • Being perceived as environmentally friendly has become a socially desirable trait. However, it is unclear if the desire to be seen as “green” actually influences behavior.
  • In a linear regression, importance of being perceived as environmentally friendly predicts both how much attention participants pay to resources consumed, as well as self-reported behaviors, such as water usage. The prediction of water use behavior by perceptions of being green is mediated by how much participants pay attention to resource use.