The ripple effect: Institutionalising pro-environmental values to shift societal norms and behaviours

Mark Everard*, Mark S. Reed, Jasper O. Kenter

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

42 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Contemporary markets and societal norms externalise many ecosystem services important for a sustainable future. A range of external legal, market, social protocol and other mechanisms, referred to as ‘societal levers’, constrain or otherwise influence the behaviour of resource managers, and the expectations and assumptions of the society within which they operate. These ‘societal levers’ have progressively institutionalised evolving societal values, influencing markets and other choices. We use the STEEP (social, technological, economic, environmental and political) framework to explore case studies of societal transitions, analysing how emergent concerns become shared and ultimately transformed into ‘levers’, shifting societal norms. Emerging concerns become influential only when they are shared across societal sectors, and when broader implications are realised across multiple dimensions of the STEEP framework. We propose and advocate use of a ‘ripple effect’ of values as a means to direct and accelerate the pace at which environmental concerns shape mainstream societal norms and structures, and become institutionalised in the form of ‘societal levers’.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)230-240
Number of pages11
JournalEcosystem Services
Volume21
DOIs
Publication statusPrint publication - 1 Oct 2016
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This research was funded through the UK National Ecosystem Assessment Follow-On (Work Package 6: Shared, Plural and Cultural Values) funded by the UK Department of the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra), the Welsh Government, the UK Natural Environment Research Council (NERC), Economic and Social Research Council (ESRC), and Arts and Humanities Research Council (AHRC). J.O. Kenter was supported in writing this paper by the European Union Seventh Framework Programme (FP7/2007-2013) under grant agreement n? 315925.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2016 Elsevier B.V.

Copyright:
Copyright 2017 Elsevier B.V., All rights reserved.

Keywords

  • Ecosystem approach
  • Ecosystem services
  • Shared values
  • Social learning
  • STEEP
  • Transformation

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