The effects of ideological value framing and symbolic racism on pro-environmental behavior

Kinga Makovi, Hannah Kasak-Gliboff

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Abstract: Environmental degradation continues to be one of the greatest threats to human well-being, posing a disproportionate burden on communities of color. Environmental action, however, fails to reflect this urgency, leaving social-behavioral research at the frontier of environmental conservation, as well as environmental justice. Broad societal consensus for environmental action is particularly sparse among conservatives. The lack of even small personal sacrifices in favor of the environment could be attributed to the relatively low salience of environmental threats to white Americans and the partisan nature of environmentalism in America. We evaluate if (1) environmental action is causally related to the ideological value framing of an environmental issue; and (2) if the perceived race of impacted communities influences environmental action as a function of racial resentment. With this large-scale, original survey experiment examining the case of air-pollution, we find weak support for the first, but we do not find evidence for the second. We advance our understanding of environmental justice advocacy and environmental inaction in the United States. Protocol registration: The stage 1 protocol for this Registered Report was accepted in principle on 10 June 2021. The protocol, as accepted by the journal, can be found at

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number22189
JournalScientific reports
Issue number1
StatePublished - Dec 2021

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General


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