Alternative transportation enterprises for rural Australia: An organizational study of greener 0ptions and use

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

Abstract

Economic and social norms/behaviours challenge ‘greener’ transportation alternatives in rural Australia’s car-dependent society. Surveys (n = 412) and interviews (n = 44) conducted at a rural Australian organization reveal experiences with, and perceptions about, carpooling, public transportation, greener cars and walking/cycling campaigns. Infrastructure, cultural norms and life-stage demands competed against pro-environmental transportation actions, even if self-identifying as ‘pro-environment’. Discussed amid cognitive dissonance and impression management theory, findings support ‘attitude/action’ gaps in environmental psychology research. Interview participants knew vehicles degraded the environment and 81 per cent surveyed used environmental ratings in car purchasing decisions. Thus, deficit-based communication theory and public health campaigns are limiting approaches. Change management requires innovative solutions, not awareness-raising campaigns, to achieve organizational carbon neutrality goals beyond ‘offsetting’ and address the reasons—inconvenience and social/physical undesirability—interviewees shared about their ability/willingness to walk/cycle/share-drive.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)269-292
Number of pages24
JournalInternational Journal of Rural Management
Volume15
Issue number2
Early online date01 Oct 2019
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 15 Nov 2019

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automobile
campaign
environmental psychology
cognitive dissonance
communication theory
change management
public transportation
neutrality
Social Norms
interview
walking
public health
deficit
rating
infrastructure
communication
organization
carbon
ability
management

Cite this

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abstract = "Economic and social norms/behaviours challenge ‘greener’ transportation alternatives in rural Australia’s car-dependent society. Surveys (n = 412) and interviews (n = 44) conducted at a rural Australian organization reveal experiences with, and perceptions about, carpooling, public transportation, greener cars and walking/cycling campaigns. Infrastructure, cultural norms and life-stage demands competed against pro-environmental transportation actions, even if self-identifying as ‘pro-environment’. Discussed amid cognitive dissonance and impression management theory, findings support ‘attitude/action’ gaps in environmental psychology research. Interview participants knew vehicles degraded the environment and 81 per cent surveyed used environmental ratings in car purchasing decisions. Thus, deficit-based communication theory and public health campaigns are limiting approaches. Change management requires innovative solutions, not awareness-raising campaigns, to achieve organizational carbon neutrality goals beyond ‘offsetting’ and address the reasons—inconvenience and social/physical undesirability—interviewees shared about their ability/willingness to walk/cycle/share-drive.",
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