Factors Necessary for the Social Diffusion of Social Energy in New England

Sawyer, S.W. (1982). Leaders in change: Solar energy owners and the implications for future adoption rates. Technological Forecasting and Social Change,21, 201-211.
After conducting a literature review, a survey was sent out to the initial group of homeowners who adopted solar energy. It was hoped that identifying factors within this first group would facilitate social diffusion of the innovation. The self-report surveys identified socioeconomic status and personal qualities necessary for the innovation to diffuse socially.

Diffusion of solar energy is most likely when the first group to adopt the innovation is well respected within the community, is well educated, and is willing to try new ideas. Furthermore, the strongest motivation for implementing solar energy is to reduce fuel bills. Concern for energy conservation and environmental issues was the second incentive. Others included the desire for self-sufficiency, recreation and to develop professional skills.
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