Elements of Perception Regarding Sustainable Development in Geneva
Posted: 16 Nov 2008
Date Written: June 1, 2008
Environmental preservation, economic growth and related topics that have an impact on Earth are becoming more and more important today. Worldwide, there's a call for a deep involvement in favour of sustainable development. Pursuing sustainable development objectives needs day-by-day commitment from all the society actors: governments, industries and individuals. Among them, individuals play a strategic role: they have the possibility to vote for politicians who act in favour of sustainable issues. Then, people can decide to buy and consume goods produced by sustainable industries. Additionally, they can pay attention not to waste water, electricity or gasoline (e.g. by walking or using public transport means) and contribute to higher recycling rates. To address these issues of individuals' attitudes and behaviours, we have conducted a survey research in order measure the perception of the Geneva population regarding the main social aspects of sustainable development. This empirical research provides answers to some aspects of the following questions: what does sustainable development mean for the Geneva population? Who should act in favour of sustainable development? How habits should be changed to contribute to sustainable development? Relationships between classes and between variables are analyzed in depth. Research hypotheses are then verified on the basis of non-parametric statistical tests. This empirical research attempts to provide some elements of perception about sustainable developments leading to recommendations for better policies for public and private institutions. Among other results, we have found that people who are attentive to the protection of the environment are more likely to change their day-by-day habits in favour of sustainable development: we thus indicate that this could be a lever over which public policies could push their activities.
Keywords: sustainable development, perception, survey research, environmental preservation
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