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Over the past decade there has been growing interest in the role of information in the promotion of environmentally friendly behaviour. This book examines how and why the provision of such information can affect individual decisions concerning buying or consuming a product or valuing a policy. The information can take the form of a product label or a statement in a survey questionnaire, and the decision can be what product to buy, what food to eat or how to answer a contingent valuation question.
The chapters in this volume carefully explore the explanations for consumer behaviour in different scenarios where information is provided about the `public' implications of individual decisions. The first set of chapters examines the prospects for eco-labelling as a tool of environmental policy from a variety of different perspectives. They also look at how this form of information provision compares with more familiar policy instruments in achieving efficiency goals. In the second and third sections the focus is on environmental and food labelling, in which a combination of private and public motives for purchase decisions is found. Finally, the role of information in contingent valuation surveys is considered, in particular the impact of information and time in altering stated value responses.
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