NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH
NATIONAL BUREAU OF ECONOMIC RESEARCH

Energy Conservation "Nudges" and Environmentalist Ideology: Evidence from a Randomized Residential Electricity Field Experiment

Dora L. Costa, Matthew E. Kahn

NBER Working Paper No. 15939
Issued in April 2010
NBER Program(s):   EEE

“Nudges” are being widely promoted to encourage energy conservation. We show that the popular electricity conservation “nudge” of providing feedback to households on own and peers’ home electricity usage in a home electricity report is two to four times more effective with political liberals than with conservatives. Political conservatives are more likely than liberals to opt out of receiving the home electricity report and to report disliking the report. Our results suggest that energy conservation nudges need to be targeted to be most effective.

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This paper was revised on January 27, 2015

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Document Object Identifier (DOI): 10.3386/w15939

Published: Dora L. Costa & Matthew E. Kahn, 2013. "Energy Conservation “Nudges” And Environmentalist Ideology: Evidence From A Randomized Residential Electricity Field Experiment," Journal of the European Economic Association, European Economic Association, vol. 11(3), pages 680-702, 06. citation courtesy of

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