Green marketing is the marketing of various environmentally, sustainable products and services. There is an increase in popularity of green marketing as more and more people are becoming concerned with environmental issues also changing their spending money patterns in a way which is much kinder to the planet. Green marketing in today's world is being tied up with sustainable development and corporate social responsibilities.
There is a load of research on environmental attitudes and recycling, yet very less focus is given to the college students. This is a huge population that is not being taken into consideration during the process of formulation and designing recycling programs. Students attitudes and behavior to recycling forms an integral part of the development of such programs, as they are the future decision makers and social innovators with regard to the recycling programs in their communities.
Reusing of items that would've been discarded otherwise is known as recycling. Recycling can be further divided into upcycling, which involves adding value for reuse, and down-cycling, which is breaking down an item or substance into its component element to reuse anything that could be salvaged. Alternative approaches include Pre-cycling and E-cycling.
This research paper deals with understanding university student's attitudes, what are the main key factors that could help in improving recycling and reusing practices by exploring the self-expressing views and perceptions of the university students. [Adekunle Oke and Joanneke Kruijsen ]
This paper is meant to answer research questions, which are as follows:
1. What drives university students towards recycling and reusing practices?
2. To what extent do university students demonstrate positive attitudes towards recycling and re-use approaches?
3. Does culture play a vital role in determining attitudes and behaviors of students?
While trying to reveal the quintessence of reusing conduct, this area displays a review of environmental behavior theories, into the general framework of which recycling behavior fits. Secondly, it is a basis for constructing our methodology that will be used to implement changes in the attitude and beliefs of university students towards recycling and reuse.
There were several theories that talked about the attitude and behaviors of university students toward recycling, yet there were some that stood out.
The hypothesis of reasoned action expresses that there are two imperative components, the first being contemplated activities. This hypothesis adds another component to the procedure of influence, that is behavioral intentions. Contemplated activity or reasoned action is exclusively worried about conduct. The second is that reasoned action utilizes two parameters, those are our states of mind and our subjective standards. These components are additionally used to foresee behavioral intention (Ajzen and Fishbein, 1980; Fishbein and Ajzen, 1975).
This theory was further elaborated by Calvin Wan and two other people in a research conducted by them on recycling attitude and behavior in a university campus, in Hong Kong. With the elements of attitude and subjective norm, they added perceived behavioral control, consequence awareness, moral norm, convenience. These elements are subjugated from a broader concept of behavioral intention (Wan, Cheung and Qiping Shen, 2012).
Even though this theory is being used widely for literature, it does have some drawbacks.
One of the major drawbacks is that this research was conducted in a university in Hong Kong, and a major chunk of the respondents were students studying there. The recycling and reusing activities in one specific campus environment and its nature might limit the homogeneity of results as compared to other areas and universities. Another limitation of this research is that the answers given by students could be bias based on social desirability (Wan, Cheung and Qiping Shen, 2012).
Another study suggests that motivation is a strong internal stimulus around which one's behavior towards recycling and reusing is organized. It is further divided into two elements, which further drives the motivation quotient, they are intensity and direction. These two elements are key drivers that determine what kind of a behavior is chose and why (Moisander, 2007).
The Theory of Planned Behavior is based on the foundations of the theory of reasoned action (TRA; Ajzen and Fishbein, 1975). The theory of planned behavior is a vast modification of the theory of reasoned action. This theory involves perceived behavior control, which is another exogenous element of behavioral intention. That is why TOPB is a more realistic in the context of non-volitional behavior. PBC speaks about the difficulty and controllability to carry out a specific behavior. PBC has two main dimensions, which are: (1) an individual's external circumstances that supplement his or her ability to adopt a particular behavior and (2) an individual's perceived ability to carry out a certain behavior (Ajzen, 1985).
The model of altruistic behavior according to Schwartz's (1997) explains behavior in terms of interrelationship between four main quotients or elements which are, social norms, personal norms, awareness of consequences, and attribution of responsibility. This model focuses that the influence of social norms on the individual behavior is not direct. Instead its mediated by personal norms of altrusic behavior. Taking recycling into consideration, one does so because he or she feels that it is the right thing to do. As described in Hopper and Nielsen (1991), “to violate a personal norm endangers guilt, and to uphold a personal norm endangers pride” (p. 200). When personal norms were assessed independently from the model of altrusic behavior, it was found that it is related to recycling behavior (Oskamp et al., 1991; Vining & Ebreo, 1992).
The current literature gives us a few clues regarding why and how culture goes about as a capable driver of practical improvement. Sacco and Crociata (2013) introduce a calculated structure for the outline of culture-driven advancement procedures, and for the assessment of multidimensional impacts of culture (Sacco, Ferilli and Tavano Blessi ,2014). Indeed, even inside this system, be that as it may, no endeavor has been made so far at exploring the connection between culture and the biological measurements.
This area of the paper deals with the design of the research study, which includes the research questions, population selection, survey design and also the pilot study. In addition to this there is data collection process, the methods of analysis of the collected data and the limitations encountered while conducting the research.
Methods of Data Collection:
To answer these research questions both qualitative as well as quantitative methods will be used. Qualitative research is an exploratory or interrogative research approach and tries to get under the skin. The main aim is to gather insights into how students behave, their attitudes towards green marketing, if they do it (green marketing) then how so (Government Design Service Manual, 2016), whereas quantitative research will help us find answers to concrete questions by generating numbers and facts. The main goal of such a research will be towards establishing or creating a representation of what these students do or what they think (Barnham, 2015).
The first being a questionnaire which is basically a part of the quantitative method of data collection. The reason of choosing questionnaires is that it allows for feedback collection from a large number of students, where it is impractical to collect feedback using other more resource intensive methods. A questionnaire also provides anonymity during the feedback process on their experience. One of the main drawbacks of using a questionnaire is that the questions could be interpreted differently by respondents. It can be difficult to design questionnaires to minimize this effect (Chen, L., Manion, L. and Morrison, K., 2000).
The sample size of the questionnaire will be taken from students from the University of Exeter, as the main aim is to increase recycling and reusing practices amongst them. For the purpose of this research the students at the university are being split into two major groups based on culture and age. These groups consist of National (Home EU) and international students.
The main reason why these two groups were chosen is that there are various cultural aspects as well as various behavioral perspectives that come into consideration while forming decisions that leads a person to perform a task of recycling or reusing. Exeter has a total student population of 22,085 taking into consideration all three campuses, Streatham, Penryn and St Luke's campus. To determine the sample size work by Daryle W. Morgan has been taken into consideration, which states that for a population size of approximately 20,000 students the sample size to be selected will be 377. Out of these 377 students based on nationality 80 international students and 297 home/EU students will be exposed to the questionnaire and focus groups (D.W. Morgan, 1970).
We will be using quota sampling a non-probability sampling technique for this research. Under this type of sampling technique, the population is first classified by characteristics such as gender, age, cultural variations. The main reason of choosing this type of sampling method is that it will help us understand the various cultural pressure points that influence the decision making process of university students towards recycling and reusing (Dodge., 2003)
To approach students to take part in the survey we will be using an online survey method, Survey Monkey. There are numerous natural disposition studies including the NEP (New Ecological Paradigm) scale utilized by Lee (2008) and the ATR (Attitude Toward Research) scale adjusted by Larson (2001). In the wake of exploring these and other related writing it has been resolved that a review created from anew would best serve this examination. The utilization of an online questionnaire was settled on in light of elements, for example, convenience and access and in addition cost. Moreover, every individual from the examination populace has access to email and the required web access to have the capacity to take an interest in this research.
The second being focus groups which forms a part of qualitative method of data collection. This method collects data through group interaction on a topic which is determined by the researcher. It is important to distinguish this from methods that collect data from multiple participation but do not allow interactive discussions (A Gibbs, 1997).
To create a questionnaire a lot of variables have to been taken into consideration. Making it brief and clear will give us the true responses needed. Jargons had to be avoided and a check for ambiguity was done to make sure that the answers to be gathered would be competently answered.
A variation of question types will be used, all being closed ended questions taken into account snappier and simpler reactions from respondents, the reaction decisions can clear up importance for respondents and furthermore answers are less demanding to look at and easier to statistically analyze (Master Program Management, 2012).
Ethical issues might arise while conducting this research. The first being the purpose of the survey. Purpose of the survey should be clear. A respondent should understand the general purpose of the survey. Sometimes the nature of the survey precludes prejudice. Next being an issue during the selection method. The respondents should know how they were selected. Another main ethical issue is with the discussion or focus group. The process of discussion sometimes might lead to insights and guidelines which is not ethically right.
A use of pilot study would be done to analyze the effectiveness and efficiency of the questionnaire that is going to be used. Depending on the outcome of this pilot study there will be necessary changes made in the questionnaire if needed (Janghorban R, Latifnejad Roudsari R, Taghipour A., 2013).
The resulting data from this survey will be then exposed to standard statistical analysis procedures, including descriptive statistics and inferential statistics and also non-parametric tests. The sample size was determined by using the model of Daryle W. Morgan.
Conclusion & Recommendation:
This study was undertaken with the main objective to understand the attitudes and behaviors of college students relative to recycling and reusing. This study provides the researcher with a view of the attitudes and behaviors of college students on the basis of culture and other factors.
In the preparation of this study much time was spent examining the literature. While there are numerous studies on environmental attitudes and recycling attitudes and behavior, the college student demographic is utterly under represented.
The cultural norms and traditions that one is brought up with has an adverse effect on their decision making process starting with alterations in behaviors and attitudes towards recycling to be in particular.
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1) What nationality do you belong to?
2) Are recycling activities included as a major role in your home country? Yes/No
3) How important is it to recycle? Importance Scale (1-5)
4) How often do you recycle? Multiple choice: Never, once a week, monthly, when it's convenient.
5) What's the key driver for recycling, according to you? Multiple choice: social norms, cultural norms, self-expression or peer pressure.
6) Would a reward system promote you to recycle? Yes/No
7) What's the main reason for you to recycle? Multiple choice: Reduce global problems, conserve natural resources, reduce carbon emission, save energy, don't recycle.
8) In terms of marketing communications which of the following would you find most appealing to aid, inform and promote recycling to students? Multiple choice – advertising, promotion/rewards, events, PR, direct marketing, interactive marketing
9) How convenient is it to recycle on campus? Likert Scale(Yes/No)
10) Does the university promote about recycling? Likert Scale (Yes/No)
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