Meta-Analysis of Randomised Controlled Trials Testing Behavioural Interventions to Promote Household Action on Climate Change

Nature Communications, Forthcoming

18 Pages Posted: 16 Oct 2018 Last revised: 23 Oct 2019

See all articles by Claudia Nisa

Claudia Nisa

New York University (NYU) - New York University, Abu Dhabi

Jocelyn J. Bélanger

New York University (NYU) - New York University, Abu Dhabi

Birga Schumpe

New York University (NYU) - New York University, Abu Dhabi

Daiane Faller

New York University (NYU) - New York University, Abu Dhabi

Date Written: August 29, 2019

Abstract

No consensus exists regarding which are the most effective mechanisms to promote household action on climate change. We present a meta-analysis of randomised controlled trials comprising 3,092,678 observations, which estimates the effects of behavioural interventions holding other factors constant. Here we show that behavioural interventions promote climate change mitigation to a very small degree while the intervention lasts (d=-0.093 95% CI -0.160, -0.055), with no evidence of sustained positive effects once the intervention ends. With the exception of recycling, most household mitigation behaviours show a low behavioural plasticity. The intervention with the highest average effect size is choice architecture (nudges) but this strategy has been tested in a limited number of behaviours. Our results do not imply behavioural interventions are less effective than alternative strategies such as financial incentives or regulations, nor exclude the possibility that behavioural interventions could have stronger effects when used in combination with alternative strategies.

Keywords: Meta-Analysis; Sustainability; Evidence-Based Policy; Randomized Controlled Trial; Climate Change

Suggested Citation

Nisa, Claudia and Bélanger, Jocelyn J. and Schumpe, Birga and Faller, Daiane, Meta-Analysis of Randomised Controlled Trials Testing Behavioural Interventions to Promote Household Action on Climate Change (August 29, 2019). Nature Communications, Forthcoming, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3254938 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3254938

Claudia Nisa (Contact Author)

New York University (NYU) - New York University, Abu Dhabi ( email )

United Arab Emirates

Jocelyn J. Bélanger

New York University (NYU) - New York University, Abu Dhabi

PO Box 129188
Abu Dhabi
United Arab Emirates

Birga Schumpe

New York University (NYU) - New York University, Abu Dhabi ( email )

United Arab Emirates

Daiane Faller

New York University (NYU) - New York University, Abu Dhabi ( email )

PO Box 129188
Abu Dhabi
United Arab Emirates

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