Journal of Business Ethics 79 (4):445-467 (2008)
AbstractThere are strong indications that many consumers are switching towards more socially and environmentally responsible products and services, reflecting a shift in consumer values indicated in several countries. However, little is known about the motives that drive some toward, or deter others from, higher levels of ethical concern and action in their purchasing decisions. Following a qualitative investigation using ZMET and focus group discussions, a questionnaire was developed and administered to a representative sample of consumers; nearly 1,000 usable questionnaires were collected. The degree of awareness, concern and action regarding 16 ethical issues was quantified, using a measure developed from the Stages of Change concept within the Transtheoretical model. Motivations for ethical behaviour, in relation to each individual’s most salient ethical issue, were investigated using initially 22 motive statements within the framework of the Decisional Balance Scale (DBS). The findings suggest that the DBS and Stages model have an explanatory value within the ethical decision-making context, and that the motives identified do reflect the Decisional Balance Constructs. Indeed the study suggests that respondents’ motivational attitudes are a function of their stage of ethical awareness, concern and action. Therefore, the Decisional Balance Scale may well prove useful for designing appropriate interventions and communications to facilitate movement towards more ethical decision-making. These findings yield strategic insight for communicating messages to ethical consumers and for better understanding their purchasing decisions.
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References found in this work
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What Will Consumers Pay for Social Product Features?Pat Auger, Paul Burke, Timothy M. Devinney & Jordan J. Louviere - 2003 - Journal of Business Ethics 42 (3):281 - 304.
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Citations of this work
Why Ethical Consumers Don’T Walk Their Talk: Towards a Framework for Understanding the Gap Between the Ethical Purchase Intentions and Actual Buying Behaviour of Ethically Minded Consumers.Michal J. Carrington, Benjamin A. Neville & Gregory J. Whitwell - 2010 - Journal of Business Ethics 97 (1):139-158.
The Human Experience of Ethics: A Review of a Decade of Qualitative Ethical Decision‐Making Research. [REVIEW]Kevin Lehnert, Jana Craft, Nitish Singh & Yung‐Hwal Park - 2016 - Business Ethics: A European Review 25 (4):498-537.
Care and Commitment in Ethical Consumption: An Exploration of the ‘Attitude–Behaviour Gap’.Deirdre Shaw, Robert McMaster & Terry Newholm - 2016 - Journal of Business Ethics 136 (2):251-265.
Historicizing Modern Slavery: Free-Grown Sugar as an Ethics-Driven Market Category in Nineteenth-Century Britain.Andrew Smith & Jennifer Johns - 2020 - Journal of Business Ethics 166 (2):271-292.
Alliances Between Brands and Social Causes: The Influence of Company Credibility on Social Responsibility Image.Enrique Bigné Alcañiz, Ruben Chumpitaz Cáceres & Rafael Currás Pérez - 2010 - Journal of Business Ethics 96 (2):169-186.
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