Indicia Consulting
Behavioral Watersheds: Examining the Geospatial Distribution and Impact of Behavior Change Programs

Project Description

We generally aim to incorporate concepts of larger cultural domains as explanatory mechanisms, as opposed to a narrow focus on individuals as 'rational actors.' In this paper, we advance this agenda by proposing a new framework for utilities to use when considering the impact of energy efficiency behavior programs among target populations. Previous studies of behavior programs have not adequately investigated the impacts of the spatial distribution of such programs. As a starting point for constructing our argument, we considered that a potential danger exists for "compassion fatigue" (Moeller 1999; Tester 2001) to set in for customers in regions with a high concentration of energy efficiency programs, and that behavior-based energy savings may go in retrograde due to this overload. This gave us the idea to first look at the geographical distribution of programs with respect to one another using GIS programs, something that to our knowledge had not been done in this space.

Project Details

Date: This paper is a heavily revised version of a paper submitted to ACEEEā€™s Summer Study for Buildings in 2014. This version was prepared for a panel on interdisciplinary methods in the anthropology of climate change for the Society for Applied Anthropology in Vancouver, April 2, 2016.