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The empirical development of cognitive, affective, and behavioral tendency measures of attitudes toward nuclear power plants in Thai university students

Progress in Nuclear Energy
DOI: 10.1016/j.pnucene.2013.12.013
  • Nuclear Power Plant (Npp)
  • Attitudes
  • Scale Construction
  • Thailand
  • University Student
  • Factor Analysis


Abstract After the nuclear accident at Fukushima, many countries become reluctant to use power from nuclear energy. However, the increasing problems from the energy crisis have called for the resurgence of nuclear power utilization. Thus, public acceptance of nuclear power plants (NPPs) has received urgent attention and is more important than ever before. To understand and to increase public's acceptance of NPPs, current attitudes toward the subject should be investigated. However, the nuclear attitude measures that have been used in recent studies either displayed misconceptions of the term “attitudes” or presented an incomplete domain of the construct. This study aimed to develop and validate measures of three components of attitudes toward NPPs, namely, cognitive, affective, and behavioral tendency. Data collected from 817 Thai university students were used in exploratory and second-order factor analyses. In this study, three factors emerged from each of the cognitive and affective measures and two factors from the behavioral tendency measure. The basic descriptive statistics, convergent validity, and reliability of each measure were computed. Positive correlations between these measures and the NPP site acceptance scores were found. More importantly, these three measures of attitude components were found to play different roles in predicting the two NPP sites acceptance. Suggestions for using these three measures in future studies to enhance research credibility are offered.

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