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Moments of Change for pro-environmental behaviour shifts (MOCHA)

We aim to examine how pro-environmental lifestyle changes might be achieved through understanding and harnessing ‘moments of change’ in life circumstances.

Responding to climate change requires profound changes to individual behaviour. However, much of our behaviour is habitual, resistant to change, and cued by stable contexts (i.e., same time, place and/or social group). When these habits are disrupted, it provides an opportunity to intervene to foster pro-environmental behaviour.

There are two objectives for the research:

  • To explore and track moments of pro-environmental behaviour change across cultures and life course;
  • To examine the effectiveness of behavioural interventions targeted to moments of change.

Moments of change

‘Moments of change’ are when individual life circumstances shift within a short time frame, and include biographical and external changes (e.g., becoming a parent, travel disruption). The relationship between moments of change and environmental impact is complex, with differences between individuals, cultures and behaviours.

This project brings together insights from several fields to bring a much-needed focus on the timings and causes of pro-environmental behaviour (change).

Targeting moments of change

This project promises a step-change in understanding the dynamics of pro-environmental change across the life course and cultures, and the development of robust habit-disrupting interventions to target ‘moments of change’ to foster lifestyle change.

Three work packages address the project’s objectives through an ambitious programme of cross-cultural research using secondary and big data analyses, longitudinal qualitative interviews and panel surveys to explore moments of change.  These are:

  • Exploring moments of pro-environmental change across cultures and life-course
  • Longitudinal behavioural analysis of moments of change
  • Interventions targeted to moments of change

Funding

The MOCHA (Understanding and leveraging ‘moments of change’ for pro-environmental behaviour shifts) project is a Consolidator Grant funded by the European Research Council from May 2019 to April 2024.

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Contact

Professor Lorraine Whitmarsh

Professor Lorraine Whitmarsh

Email:
whitmarshle@cardiff.ac.uk
Telephone:
+44 (0)29 2087 6972