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Regular version of the site

Article

Household Technology and the Sustainability of Consumer Behavior in Moscow

Sustainability. 2015. Vol. 8. No. 1. P. 32-37.
Chernovich E., Miles I. D., Polyakova V.

Consumers use appliances, and their concomitant technology, in their domestic routines. What role do these appliances play in shaping sustainable behavior on the part of the consumer? Scientists in this field believe that household devices have certain scenarios of use, which they refer to as “scripts.” Is change in the scripts associated with such devices the key to more sustainable consumption? This case study examined how consumers interpret and respond to the scripts of the devices they use in their everyday lives. Pro-environmentalist consumers were compared with those who have little concern about environmental problems. In-depth interviews found that the scripts embedded in domestic appliances were seen by the two groups in different ways, and the groups varied in how much influence the scripts had on consumer behavior. Consumers with few environmental concerns were found to be more likely to change to more pro-environmental behavior patterns following the technological scripts. The study also considered the generalizability of these results and their broader implications for practical action.