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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle

Measuring Actions for Nature—Development and Validation of a Pro-Nature Conservation Behaviour Scale

1
Human Sciences Research Centre, University of Derby, Derby DE22 1GB, UK
2
Environmental Sustainability Research Centre, University of Derby, Derby DE22 1GB, UK
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Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Sustainability 2020, 12(12), 4885; https://doi.org/10.3390/su12124885
Received: 18 May 2020 / Revised: 10 June 2020 / Accepted: 11 June 2020 / Published: 15 June 2020
Scientists have classed the ongoing decline in biodiversity—caused by humans—as a mass extinction. To mitigate the consequences of this extinction, immediate action is of the utmost importance. However, effective ways of promoting pro-nature conservation behaviours to preserve and enhance biodiversity require better understanding and measurement. Thus, a reliable and valid measurement tool is needed. While there are measurement tools for general pro-environmental behaviours, as of yet, no measure of behaviours that specifically promote biodiversity exists. Here, we present such a tool: the Pro-Nature Conservation Behaviour Scale (ProCoBS), a psychometrically validated questionnaire scale measuring active behaviours that specifically support the conservation of biodiversity. An item pool developed through consultation with wildlife and biodiversity experts was subjected to psychometric scale development analyses. Data from 300 participants were used to develop the 18-item ProCoBS long form, as well as an 8-item short form. A latent variable model with four factors (Individual Engagement, Social Engagement, Planting, and Wildlife) was identified. In a second study, a subset of 250 of the original participants answered the questionnaire again, in addition to related psychological constructs. The data were used to assess test–retest reliability and construct validity. Results showed that the scale and its short form were reliable (full scale: α = 0.893, short form: α = 0.825) and valid. In a third study, a representative sample of 1298 adults in the UK completed the short form. Confirmatory Factor Analysis demonstrated a good fit for all factors, indicating that the ProCoBS is a psychometrically robust measure. The ProCoBS provides the definitive, much needed tool for measuring conservation behaviours. This will enhance research and impact practical work in the conservation domain for a sustainable future. A cross-cultural examination of the scale is still needed. View Full-Text
Keywords: psychometrics; nature conservation; pro-nature conservation behaviours; civil action; gardening; pro-environmental behaviours psychometrics; nature conservation; pro-nature conservation behaviours; civil action; gardening; pro-environmental behaviours
MDPI and ACS Style

Barbett, L.; Stupple, E.J.N.; Sweet, M.; Schofield, M.B.; Richardson, M. Measuring Actions for Nature—Development and Validation of a Pro-Nature Conservation Behaviour Scale. Sustainability 2020, 12, 4885.

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