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2011-12-01 | Research Brief

Urban local governance, cooperation and emotions: experimental results from Costa Rica

Alpízar, Francisco and Elisabeth Gsottbauer. 2012. “Urban local governance, cooperation and emotions: experimental results from Costa Rica” EfD Research Brief
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Social and regulatory pressure promotes pro-environmental action and social welfare.

Pro-social behavior and its implication for improved environmental outcomes play an important role in influencing household behavior of waste separation and recycling. Amongst other things, behavior is influenced by reputational concerns which may contribute to pro-social behavior. Here, we present the results from a series of framed field experiments conducted in urban communities in San Jose, Costa Rica to test different non-monetary incentives to encourage local cooperation for widespread waste separation: can the disclosure of antisocial behavior (“being shamed”) or the expectation of honor through the publicity of “good deeds” contribute to environmental behavior?