Community-Based Social Marketing: an investigation of sustainable behavioral change strategies at the municipality level in Sweden
Abstract: The new Special Report on Global Warming of 1.5 °C by the International Panel on Climate Change presents the drastic need to reduce greenhouse gas emissions for the security and sustainable development of human kind. In Sweden, household consumption related carbon emissions needs to be radically reduced in order to meet the international climate goals set in this report. Changing individual behavior has proven over time to be a challenging task for many initiatives. Community-Based Social Marking is a behavior method that has been proven to be effective in creating sustainable behavior change at the community level. A case study is conducted at Avesta kommun in Sweden in order to discover what behavior is best to change to reduce the carbon footprint per person at this municipality, what strategy is best to achieve this goal and what effect this strategy will have. The results from the Community-Based Social Marketing case study show that a vegan diet as a behavior has the highest positive impact on the environment to promote in Avesta, but the behavior with the second highest impact, a vegetarian diet, is chosen due to its higher probability to implement and external health factors associated with a vegan diet. The strategy chosen is a Facebook page designed to provide weekly vegetarian recipes to families in Avesta with the goal of increasing their consumption of vegetarian food. The strategy is tested on a pilot group to determine its effectiveness. The conclusion of this study shows that the strategy is overall effective on the pilot group for increasing their knowledge and consumption of vegetarian meals.
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