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Individualism and climate change policies: international evidence

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journal contribution
posted on 2023-02-24, 15:18 authored by Trung V VuTrung V Vu

Purpose

This paper aims to examine the extent to which the cultural dimension of individualism/collectivism matters for international differences in climate change policy performance. This study postulates that individualistic societies, relative to their collectivistic counterparts, are more likely to address global climate change.

Design/methodology/approach

The main hypothesis is tested using data for a world sample of up to 92 countries. To achieve causal inference, this study isolates exogenous sources of variation in individualistic cultures, based on blood distance to the UK and historical pathogen prevalence.

Findings

The core results suggest that individualistic countries are characterized by greater climate change policy performance. This study also finds evidence that individualism affects climate change policy adoption through enhancing governance and female political representation. Subnational analyses based on data from the World Values Survey indicate that survey participants with an orientation toward individualism tend to self-report positive attitudes to pro-environmental policies.

Research limitations/implications

The main findings help improve the understanding of the deep origins of climate change policy performance, which is relevant for formulating policies that help mitigate the consequences of changing climate conditions.

Originality/value

To the best of the author’s knowledge, this paper is the first study to link cultural traits of individualism and climate change policy performance across countries.

History

School

  • Business and Economics

Department

  • Economics

Published in

Journal of Economics and Development

Volume

25

Issue

1

Pages

22-36

Publisher

Emerald

Version

  • VoR (Version of Record)

Rights holder

© Trung V. Vu

Publisher statement

© Trung V. Vu. Published in Journal of Economics and Development. Published by Emerald Publishing Limited. This article is published under the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY 4.0) licence. Anyone may reproduce, distribute, translate and create derivative works of this article (for both commercial & non-commercial purposes), subject to full attribution to the original publication and authors. The full terms of this licence may be seen at http://creativecommons.org/licences/by/4.0/legalcode

Acceptance date

2022-12-21

Publication date

2023-01-05

Copyright date

2022

eISSN

1859-0020

Language

  • en

Depositor

Dr Van Trung Vu. Deposit date: 5 January 2023

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