Research demonstrates that social influence and social-psychological perceptions motivate pro-environmental behavior. This is increasingly important as we observe the dramatic loss of native species and biodiversity. To help address this biodiversity crisis, conservation organizations can try to help motivated residents plant native habitat around their homes and encourage other people in their social networks to do the same. Individual conservation behaviors (like native plant gardening) may have different barriers and motivations from relational organizing behaviors (like encouraging others to garden), and it is important to understand both to increase the efficiency and effectiveness of environmental movements.
A team of CSU researchers set out to understand the drivers of these two types of behaviors in a multi-year study in collaboration with PPAN partners, the City of Fort Collins Nature in the City program and Audubon Rockies. Presenter, Veronica Champine, synthesizes the lessons learned from this applied research to inform future pollinator conservation initiatives.
Veronica Champine is a PhD Candidate in the Human Dimensions of Natural Resources Department at Colorado State University. Under the mentorship of Dr. Rebecca Niemiec, Veronica conducts social psychological research on motivators and barriers to different types of conservation behaviors, including native plant gardening and outreach.