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Young energy savers : exploring the role of parents, peers, media and schools in saving energy among children in Belgium

Hayley Pearce (UGent) , Liselot Hudders (UGent) and Dieneke Van de Sompel (UGent)
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Abstract
Climate change is one of the biggest threats our world is facing. Therefore, reducing energy consumption and energy waste are of significant importance. Although children are the main beneficiaries of all efforts done to impact climate change, not much is known about young children's energy curtailment literacy, which refers to children's knowledge, attitudes and moral reflections related to reducing energy waste by performing curtailment behavior, and the impact different socialization agents might have on the development of energy curtailment literacy. In this paper, 29 in-depth semi-structured interviews were conducted in Belgium with children between the age of 6 and 12 to get better insights in their energy curtailment literacy and in how this is impacted by different socialization agents. Results show that children have strong self-efficacy beliefs toward curtailment behavior. They experience negative emotions when talking about the consequences of climate change and the fact that energy is often wasted. Energy waste was also evaluated as immoral behavior. Especially older children have some basic understanding of climate change and energy while the impact of energy use on the environment stays unclear. Most children perform energy curtailment out of personal preference or their willingness to conform to a set norm instead of its environmental impact. Parents and teachers appear to have the biggest impact on the formation of children's energy curtailment literacy and are therefore considered to be the main socialization agents. The influence of media and peers appears to be less strong among these young children.
Keywords
Primary school, Children, Energy curtailment literacy, Socialization agents, Semi-structured interviews, Belgium, CLIMATE-CHANGE, QUALITATIVE RESEARCH, CONSUMER BEHAVIORS, KNOWLEDGE, CONSERVATION, CONSUMPTION, ATTITUDES, STUDENTS, FRIENDS, PEOPLE

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MLA
Pearce, Hayley, et al. “Young Energy Savers : Exploring the Role of Parents, Peers, Media and Schools in Saving Energy among Children in Belgium.” ENERGY RESEARCH & SOCIAL SCIENCE, vol. 63, 2020, doi:10.1016/j.erss.2019.101392.
APA
Pearce, H., Hudders, L., & Van de Sompel, D. (2020). Young energy savers : exploring the role of parents, peers, media and schools in saving energy among children in Belgium. ENERGY RESEARCH & SOCIAL SCIENCE, 63. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.erss.2019.101392
Chicago author-date
Pearce, Hayley, Liselot Hudders, and Dieneke Van de Sompel. 2020. “Young Energy Savers : Exploring the Role of Parents, Peers, Media and Schools in Saving Energy among Children in Belgium.” ENERGY RESEARCH & SOCIAL SCIENCE 63. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.erss.2019.101392.
Chicago author-date (all authors)
Pearce, Hayley, Liselot Hudders, and Dieneke Van de Sompel. 2020. “Young Energy Savers : Exploring the Role of Parents, Peers, Media and Schools in Saving Energy among Children in Belgium.” ENERGY RESEARCH & SOCIAL SCIENCE 63. doi:10.1016/j.erss.2019.101392.
Vancouver
1.
Pearce H, Hudders L, Van de Sompel D. Young energy savers : exploring the role of parents, peers, media and schools in saving energy among children in Belgium. ENERGY RESEARCH & SOCIAL SCIENCE. 2020;63.
IEEE
[1]
H. Pearce, L. Hudders, and D. Van de Sompel, “Young energy savers : exploring the role of parents, peers, media and schools in saving energy among children in Belgium,” ENERGY RESEARCH & SOCIAL SCIENCE, vol. 63, 2020.
@article{8639361,
  abstract     = {{Climate change is one of the biggest threats our world is facing. Therefore, reducing energy consumption and energy waste are of significant importance. Although children are the main beneficiaries of all efforts done to impact climate change, not much is known about young children's energy curtailment literacy, which refers to children's knowledge, attitudes and moral reflections related to reducing energy waste by performing curtailment behavior, and the impact different socialization agents might have on the development of energy curtailment literacy. In this paper, 29 in-depth semi-structured interviews were conducted in Belgium with children between the age of 6 and 12 to get better insights in their energy curtailment literacy and in how this is impacted by different socialization agents. Results show that children have strong self-efficacy beliefs toward curtailment behavior. They experience negative emotions when talking about the consequences of climate change and the fact that energy is often wasted. Energy waste was also evaluated as immoral behavior. Especially older children have some basic understanding of climate change and energy while the impact of energy use on the environment stays unclear. Most children perform energy curtailment out of personal preference or their willingness to conform to a set norm instead of its environmental impact. Parents and teachers appear to have the biggest impact on the formation of children's energy curtailment literacy and are therefore considered to be the main socialization agents. The influence of media and peers appears to be less strong among these young children.}},
  articleno    = {{101392}},
  author       = {{Pearce, Hayley and Hudders, Liselot and Van de Sompel, Dieneke}},
  issn         = {{2214-6296}},
  journal      = {{ENERGY RESEARCH & SOCIAL SCIENCE}},
  keywords     = {{Primary school,Children,Energy curtailment literacy,Socialization agents,Semi-structured interviews,Belgium,CLIMATE-CHANGE,QUALITATIVE RESEARCH,CONSUMER BEHAVIORS,KNOWLEDGE,CONSERVATION,CONSUMPTION,ATTITUDES,STUDENTS,FRIENDS,PEOPLE}},
  language     = {{eng}},
  pages        = {{18}},
  title        = {{Young energy savers : exploring the role of parents, peers, media and schools in saving energy among children in Belgium}},
  url          = {{http://dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.erss.2019.101392}},
  volume       = {{63}},
  year         = {{2020}},
}

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