Skip to main content
SLU publication database (SLUpub)

Research article2023Peer reviewedOpen access

The primary drivers of private-sphere pro-environmental behaviour in five European countries during the Covid-19 pandemic

Iwinska, Katarzyna; Bielinski, Jacek; Calheiros, Cristina Sousa Coutinho; Koutsouris, Alexandros; Kraszewska, Magdalena; Mikusinski, Grzegorz


Nowadays, when fighting climate change and other global environmental issues is of utmost urgency, the un-derstanding of what drives pro-environmental behaviour has become a hot topic in both academic and practical circles. Some earlier studies unravelled the complexity of the underlying factors of pro-environmental conduct, yet more studies are needed to understand the socio-cultural premises of such behaviour in different countries. The main aim of this paper is to offer a comprehensive analysis of the importance of pro-environmental behaviour drivers across five countries in Europe, namely Greece, Poland, Portugal, Sweden, and the United Kingdom. The survey using computer-assisted web interviews (N = 2502) was implemented in July 2020, the first summer of the Covid-19 pandemic. Hierarchical linear models were employed to analyse individuals' behaviour, defined as self-perceived declaration of the willingness to contribute to environmental conservation. The results showed that attitudinal and value-related factors are more significant than demographics. Biospheric values and relationship to nature generally affect pro-environmental behaviour positively. Similarly, the expe-rience of Covid-19 exerted a positive influence. In terms of country-level predictors, greenhouse gas emissions were found to have affected pro-environmental behaviour negatively, while the share of renewable energy sources influenced it positively. The cumulative country Covid-19-related mortality at the time of investigation did not have discernible impact. Based on the results it is suggested that, in order to foster PEB, a stronger emphasis on environmental education and attitudes towards nature should be employed.


Pro -environmental behaviour; Environmental awareness; Environmental information sources; Nature connectedness; Value -belief -norm theory; Hierarchical linear model

Published in

Journal of Cleaner Production
2023, Volume: 393, article number: 136330Publisher: ELSEVIER SCI LTD

    Associated SLU-program

    Nature experiences and health

    Sustainable Development Goals

    SDG13 Climate action

    UKÄ Subject classification

    Social Sciences Interdisciplinary

    Publication identifier


    Permanent link to this page (URI)