It has been argued that the dominant social paradigm (DSP) of Western industrial societies is complicit in environmental decline. In the present research, the DSP and its elements and their relation to consumption behavior are first addressed in classes on social responsibility that are taught in a business school. Two quasi-experiments are then conducted using an after-only with control group design (Study 1) and a before-after with control group design (Study 2). In both studies, attitudes of students in the social responsibility classes are compared to control groups of marketing students to determine the effects of instruction on the DSP and environmental attitudes. Findings suggest that lower scores on the DSP for the experimental group result in increased measures of environmental attitudes and perception of change necessary to ameliorate environmental degradation. However, in neither experiment does willingness to change one's own behavior materialize.
- Dominant social paradigm
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