Extending Planned Environmentalism: Anticipated Guilt and Embarrassment Across Cultures

Kaiser, F., Schultz, P., Berenguer, J., Corral-Verdugo, V., & Tankha, G. (2008). Extending planned environmentalism: Anticipated guilt and embarrassment across cultures. European Psychologist, 13(4), 288-297.

This paper cross-culturally tests an extended version of the planned behavior theory. Using cross-sectional surveys of 801 university students from four different cultures (high vs. low individualism, and English- vs. Spanish-speaking), we expected anticipated feelings of guilt to predict behavioral intention in cultures high on individualism, whereas anticipated feelings of embarrassment would be predictive of intention in cultures low on individualism. Results from a series of structural equation models showed that anticipated embarrassment had virtually the same effect as guilt across all four cultures. Although technically distinct, anticipated guilt and embarrassment were nearly indistinguishable from an individual perspective so that either concept is able to increase the explanatory power of the planned behavior theory for environmental conservation.

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