The moderating effect of collective efficacy on the relationship between environmental values and ecological behaviors
Carpio Camargo, Antonio José
Tabernero Urbieta, Carmen
Appreciation of nature value
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Sustainability implies improvements in responsible behaviors such as recycling and energy saving. Yet, ecological behaviors cannot be improved only by attending to personal variables; focus must also be put on the collective variables. The main aim of this research was to analyze how individual variables (environmental values) and collective variables (collective efficacy for ecological behavior) interact to explain recycling (Study 1; 502 students of Spanish universities) and energy-saving behaviors (Study 2; 544 students of Ecuadorian universities). Participants completed an online questionnaire that reflected all the studied variables. Ecological behaviors were collected through frequency scales. The results of the moderated analyses performed with Process for SPSS confirmed the moderating effect of collective efficacy in the relationship that both preservation and appreciation established with recycling and energy-saving behavior alike. This moderating effect was also confirmed in the relationship that utilization developed with recycling, but not with energy saving. Thus, collective efficacy directly influences pro-environmental behavior, but also interacts with the personal values of individuals. Consequently, the results indicate the need to encourage collective efficacy for ecological behaviors of individuals, groups, collectives, and communities.