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The Structure of Environmental Concern in Rural and Urban Settings

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  • Environmental Attitudes
  • Environmental Concern
  • Rural And Urban Environmental Concern
  • Design
  • Ecology
  • Geography


The concern for environmental issues is one of the most typical features of the modern culture. Nevertheless, this pro-environmental orientation does not allow the people to change their behaviour according with this pro-environmental orientation. To account this incongruence, several studies have been carried out to define what are the determinants of the pro-environmental intentions and behaviours. In this respect, social context (Olli, Grendstad and Wollebaek, 2001) has to be included into the determinants of the pro-environmental intentions. In the present paper, the socio-structural variables of the context are considered, and environmental values, attitudes and behavioural intentions of a rural (N=90) and urban (N=95) sample are confronted. In both samples, environmental orientation has been measured through three questionnaires: the New Ecological Paradigm Scale (translated into Spanish), a moral obligation scale (focusing on environmental issues) and a questionnaire of pro-environmental behavioural intentions (the last two questionnaires has been designed for this specific study).The results indicate high levels of environmental concern and low levels of pro-environmental intentions in both samples. When the two samples are considered, it was found that those living in cities assume a larger number of environmental responsibility values, but their scores in pro-environmental attitudes and behavioural intentions are lower than in rural participants. People living in the rural context present more attitudes of environmental responsibility and greater consistency between environmental attitudes and behavioural intentions than urban sample.The urban-rural context could be considered as an explanatory referent of pro-environmental beliefs and behaviours.ReferenceOlli, E., Grendstad, g. and Wollebaek, D. (2001). Correlates of environmental behaviors. Bringing back social context. Environment and Behavior, 33, 181-208.

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