What is the norm? A research about the influence of social norms on behaviour regarding mobility, food and household

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This research aimed to examine the influence of social norms on behaviour by exploring and comparing three themes: mobility, food and household. By reviewing the existing theories on the subjects of attitude, behaviour and social norms and establishing the conceptual model partly on the Integrated Behavioural Model, six relevant variables were specified. A survey was conducted with over 200 participants and the results were analysed using logistic regression analyses. Furthermore, the three themes were compared. The most important findings are as follows. Distinguishing between descriptive norms (observing others’ actions) and injunctive norms (feeling others’ expectations) proved to be an important distinction. Injunctive norms only have a positive influence on behaviour for the themes mobility and household. Furthermore, the influence of social norms on attitude was also researched but it was found that the social norm did not reflect the participants’ attitudes. This led to the reflection that social norms are not an influence on attitude, but an influence on behaviour parallel to attitude. Finally, the theme-specific context factors and the demographic characteristics were found to differ between the themes and further research is necessary to form a clearer view on the influence of these two variables on behaviour.
Faculteit der Managementwetenschappen