Behavioral spillover effects from a social information campaign

Peer Reviewed
1 April 2020

Fredrik Carlsson, Marcela Jaime, Clara Villegas

We investigate whether a social information campaign aimed at reducing water use causes a spillover effect on the use of electricity. On average, water use decreased by 6 percent for the treatment group. We identify a positive spillover effect on electricity use among households that had efficient use of water before the campaign. The effect is sizeable: almost a 9 percent reduction. We argue that these results are consistent with a model of cognitive dissonance where the efficient households infer information about electricity use from the water use information.

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Carlsson, F., Jaime, M., & Villegas, C. (2020). Behavioral spillover effects from a social information campaign. Journal of Environmental Economics and Management, 102325. doi:10.1016/j.jeem.2020.102325

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Publication | 8 May 2020