A comparative study of relative roles and sequences of cognitive and affective attitudes on tourists’ pro-environmental behavioral intention

Xiongzhi Wang, Xiangru Qin, Yongbo Zhou

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    Abstract

    Attitudinal interventions are commonly implemented to nudge pro-environmental actions. However, the relative roles and sequences of cognitive and affective attitudes on tourists’ pro-environmental behavioral intention (PEBI) and how PEBI variants impact the attitude-intention relationships require further investigation. Based on the theory of planned behavior, this paper compares the differential effects and sequences of cognitive and affective attitudes on tourists’ low-effort and high-effort PEBI. Structural equation modeling results of two studies conducted in a nature-based and an urban destination showed a superior role of affect, i.e., affective, but not cognitive attitude, guided tourists’ PEBI, irrespective of implementation difficulty variants. This finding supports the automatic-processing rather than the controlled-processing hypothesis of attitude-intention processes in the tourism context. The results of sequential models further confirmed the above conclusion and supported the “affective” model wherein affective attitude predicts cognitive attitude when shaping subsequent PEBI. These studies advance understandings of relationships between and sequences of attitudes and PEBIs and challenge predominant cognitive interventions in environmental communication practices.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)727-746
    JournalJournal of Sustainable Tourism
    Volume28
    Issue number5
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - 2020

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