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Open AccessArticle

Is Subjective Knowledge the Key to Fostering Sustainable Behavior? Mixed Evidence from an Education Intervention in Mexico

by Aaron Redman 1,2,* and Erin Redman 1
1
School of Sustainability, Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ 85281, USA
2
Center for Global Sustainability and Cultural Transformation, Leuphana University, Lüneburg 21335, Germany
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Michael Brody
Educ. Sci. 2017, 7(1), 4; https://doi.org/10.3390/educsci7010004
Received: 28 October 2016 / Revised: 9 December 2016 / Accepted: 15 December 2016 / Published: 24 December 2016
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Sustainability, Environment and Education)
Educational interventions are a promising way to shift individual behaviors towards Sustainability. Yet, as this research confirms, the standard fare of education, declarative knowledge, does not work. This study statistically analyzes the impact of an intervention designed and implemented in Mexico using the Educating for Sustainability (EfS) framework which focuses on imparting procedural and subjective knowledge about waste through innovative pedagogy. Using data from three different rounds of surveys we were able to confirm (1) the importance of subjective and procedural knowledge for Sustainable behavior in a new context; (2) the effectiveness of the EfS framework and (3) the importance of changing subjective knowledge for changing behavior. While the impact was significant in the short term, one year later most if not all of those gains had evaporated. Interventions targeted at subjective knowledge will work, but more research is needed on how to make behavior change for Sustainability durable. View Full-Text
Keywords: behavior change; Educating for Sustainability; environmental education; knowledge domains; sustainability science; waste behavior change; Educating for Sustainability; environmental education; knowledge domains; sustainability science; waste
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  • Externally hosted supplementary file 1
    Link: http://hdl.handle.net/2286/R.I.36936
    Description: The data, as CSV files as well as the R Scripts for the analysis are available from the Arizona State University Digital Repository.
MDPI and ACS Style

Redman, A.; Redman, E. Is Subjective Knowledge the Key to Fostering Sustainable Behavior? Mixed Evidence from an Education Intervention in Mexico. Educ. Sci. 2017, 7, 4.

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