Energy conservation through behavioral change: Examining the effectiveness of a tailor-made approach

Abrahamse, W., 2007, [Groningen]: [S.n.]. 144 p.

Research output: ThesisThesis fully internal (DIV)

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  • Wokje Abrahamse
Households constitute an important target group when it comes to encouraging energy conservation. This dissertation provides an overview of the effectiveness of interventions aimed at encouraging households to reduce their energy use through behavioral changes. It also provides more insight into the factors related to household energy use and conservation. Tailored interventions in particular appear to be effective in reducing energy consumption. Households were given tailored information about energy saving measures they could apply. They were asked to try and save 5% energy and the website indicated how much energy they could save with each measure to attain that goal. Households also received feedback about their energy savings. Households who received the combination of tailored information, goal setting and tailored feedback via the Internet saved 5%, while households in a control group used more energy. Households had adopted more energy-saving measures and had more knowledge of energy conservation, compared to the control group. Also, household energy consumption appeared to be mainly related to socio-demographic variables, such as income and household size. Energy savings appeared to be mainly related to individual factors like perceived behavioral control. If the aim is to encourage households to adopt more sustainable lifestyles, it is important to provide them with more insight into which energy saving options are most effective for them to conserve energy. In view of the annual energy reduction targets set by the Dutch government, a tailor-made approach via the Internet can be in important step in that direction.
Original languageEnglish
QualificationDoctor of Philosophy
Awarding Institution
  • Vlek, C.A.J., Supervisor, External person
  • Rothengatter, J.A., Supervisor
  • Steg, L., Co-supervisor, External person
Award date6-Dec-2007
Place of Publication[Groningen]
Print ISBNs9789036732192, 9789036732789
Publication statusPublished - 2007

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