発表

3B-089

Facilitating Waste Reduction Through Social Media in China: An Experimental Study on Implicit and Explicit Attitudes and Behaviors

[責任発表者] 劉 迅:1
[連名発表者・登壇者] 甲斐田 直子:1, 耿 柳娜#:2, 劉 婷#:2, 林 育坪#:2
1:筑波大学, 2:南京大学

Background
Waste generation from household sectors has been one of the major environmental problems in many countries, and China is a typical one of them. Utilizing social media, which is recently heavily used in China, may also work in attracting attention and actions by Chinese people particularly younger generation toward reducing waste generation in their daily life.
Objectives
The present study aimed to examine possible influence of social media on implicit and explicit environmental attitudes and behavior with a specific focus on waste reduction in China. We hypothesized that: social media and its response frequency have positive influence on waste reduction behavior itself, implicit and explicit attitude; social media response frequency is positively correlated with the continuing effect of social media on waste reduction and implicit and explicit attitudes.
Methods
Data were collected through experimental intervention surveys with participation of Nanjing University students in China in March-April 2018. Seventy-eight student participants (male n=35, female n=43; age mean=19.36, SD=0.98) were randomly assigned to either of the two conditions with or without social media interaction with the experimenter using WeChat, the most common social media app in China. Implicit attitudes were assessed using two types of implicit association tests (IAT), one for connectedness to nature and another for preference to packaging (to become waste after use). Data for explicit attitudes and behaviors were collected in a structured questionnaire format which included, the revised New Ecological Paradigm (NEP) scale (Dunlap, Van Liere, Mertig & Jones, 2000), and the extended Inclusion of Nature in Self scale (EINS) (Martin & Czellar, 2016), environmental awareness and waste-related practices. In addition, each participant measured and reported his garbage (in grams) he or she generated at the students’ dormitory every day during the experiment, which was used as explicit behavior data.
The whole experiment took five weeks in total, consisting of three consecutive periods: baseline period (one week), intervention period (two weeks) and follow-up period (two weeks). The intervention group received environment related postings and was encouraged to interact with the experimenter through social media, while the control group did not. All the participants took the two IAT sessions, i.e. connectedness to nature and packaging preference, and questionnaire survey at the end of each period. Daily waste volume was reported from each participant to the experimenter every day during the experiment.
The data were entered into correlation analysis, ANOVA and multiple regression analysis to examine the influence of social media (i.e., with/without and degree of interaction) on waste reduction and implicit and explicit environmental attitudes as well as their general relationships.
Results
Environmental awareness significantly increased in the intervention condition (i.e. with social media). There was no significant effect of social media on waste reduction and implicit attitudes while self-reported waste reduction generally improved in both conditions. As a result of within-condition comparison in the intervention condition, the sub-group that proactively commented to the postings by the experimenter (i.e., social media active group) had a significant improvement in environmental awareness and it lasted till the end of the follow-up period compared with the non-active group while actual reduction in waste volume was found only in the non-active group. The results of multiple regression analysis show that self-reported waste reduction behavior was negatively related with monthly expenses and positively related with environmental awareness, while actual waste reduction (i.e., waste volume) was not found to have such relations with demographic and other factors.
In summary, social media facilitated explicit attitudes and behavior (i.e., environmental awareness and waste reduction behavior) but did not have significant influence on implicit attitudes (i.e., IAT). The present findings imply that social media has potential on facilitating waste reduction and other pro-environmental behaviors among young generation in China through changing explicit environmental attitudes.
Acknowledgment
This study was funded by MEXT/JSPS KAKENHI Grant (No. 16H05896).

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