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Sustainability 2014, 6(10), 6553-6575; doi:10.3390/su6106553

From Attitude Change to Behaviour Change: Institutional Mediators of Education for Sustainable Development Effectiveness

1
Department of Environmental Science and Engineering, Fudan University, Shanghai 200433, China
2
Values and Sustainability Research Group, University of Brighton, Cockcroft Building, Lewes Road, Brighton BN2 4GJ, UK
3
Adora Foundation, Bristol BS5 8DA, UK
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 18 April 2014 / Revised: 10 September 2014 / Accepted: 17 September 2014 / Published: 29 September 2014
(This article belongs to the Section Sustainable Education and Approaches)
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Abstract

In this paper, we explore the way in which institutional contexts mediate values-focused behaviour change, with potential design implications. We use concepts taken from training research, where “learning transfer” refers to the translation into practice of the learning acquired during training: it is considered necessary to generalize it for the job context and for it to be maintained over a period of time on the job. In this paper, we analyse the example of one education for sustainable development (ESD) intervention that is already established as pedagogically effective when it is deployed in diverse institutional environments worldwide—the Youth as Agents of Behaviour Change program of the International Federation of Red Cross and Red Crescent Societies (IFRC). This allows an opportunity to consider variations in learning transfer due to distinctive moderating institutional features, which can now be understood in terms of varying transfer climates, levels of leadership support and opportunities to practice. Additional barriers of tokenistic consultation, lack of role clarity and perverse effects of increased distance between trainees and their colleagues on return were also seen. ESD programs intending to bridge the values-action gap could benefit from not focusing only on the training content, but pre-planning organisational support for returning trainees and including in the training ways for them to assess and plan to overcome such difficulties. View Full-Text
Keywords: behaviour change; institutional context; learning transfer; sustainable development; education for sustainable development behaviour change; institutional context; learning transfer; sustainable development; education for sustainable development
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Velasco, I.; Harder, M.K. From Attitude Change to Behaviour Change: Institutional Mediators of Education for Sustainable Development Effectiveness. Sustainability 2014, 6, 6553-6575.

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