Determinants of Professional Commitment to Environmental Sustainability

Jasmin Kientzel, UNU-MERIT / School of Governance

The dissertation investigates professional commitment to environmental sustainability in the context of Voluntary Environmental Programmes (VEPs).

The factors studied include attitudes, norms, perceived behavioural control, social identity, intrinsic and extrinsic motivations within the contexts of professional decisions and cooperation behaviour. This dissertation’s main objective is to determine factors that drive voluntary and environmentally sustainable professional practices in the private sector.

Several studies were conducted to explain professionals’ environmentally relevant behaviour within a professional decision-making context.

Results demonstrate that social and psychological variables can offer valuable contributions to explain variance in adoption behaviour and all of the frameworks contribute to better understand the adoption of environmental professional behaviours. However, the results demonstrate that engaging in environmentally relevant behaviours is highly contextual.

Professional behaviour changes can be difficult as individuals are reluctant to question previously learned practices and they rely on cooperation from other building professionals.

As a consequence, this dissertation demonstrates that despite some common behaviour patterns VEP adoption processes, the reasons for adoption among private sector professionals are complex, both from a contextual and psychological point of view. The results confirm, however, that policies and programmes cannot be designed and implemented successfully without understanding workers’ professional needs and social-psychological determinants that drive programme uptake.

Venue: Aula, Minderbroedersberg 4-6, Maastricht

Date: 09 September 2015

Time: 16:00 - 17:30  CET