Green is Good but Usability is Better: Consumer Reactions to Environmental Initiatives in Web-based Electronic Services
Athens University of Economics and Business - Department of Management Science and Technology
Pavlos A. Vlachos
ALBA Graduate Business School at The American College of Greece
Christos D. Koritos
American College of Greece
July 19, 2011
There is an emerging consensus in the corporate social responsibility (CSR) literature suggesting that the quest for the so-called business case for CSR should be abandoned. In the same vein, several researchers have suggested that future research should start examining not whether, but rather when CSR is likely to have strengthened, weakened or even nullified effects on organizational outcomes (e.g. Margolis et al., 2007; Kiron et al., 2012). Using perspectives from several theoretical frameworks (Needs Theory, Technology Acceptance Theory, and Psychological Distance Theory), we contribute to the literature by empirically examining the tension between functional and sustainability attributes in a novel context, namely that of green Information Systems (IS). The findings indicate that the positive effect of CSR on users’ attitudes towards green websites is moderated by two primarily utilitarian IS factors – namely perceived ease of use and perceived usefulness – and an important utilitarian individual difference variable – namely perceived self-efficacy with technology. Our findings are also important if interpreted within the context of the ethical decision-making literature (e.g. O’Fallon and Butterfield, 2005), as they indicate that the linkage between moral judgment and moral outcomes is unlikely to be that straightforward.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 39
Keywords: ethical consumerism, corporate social responsibility, green websites, attitudes
JEL Classification: M31working papers series
Date posted: July 19, 2011 ; Last revised: July 5, 2012
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