Intergenerational influence on sustainable consumer attitudes and behaviors: Roles of family communication and peer influence in environmental consumer socialization

Essiz O., Mandrik C.

Psychology and Marketing, vol.39, no.1, pp.5-26, 2022 (SSCI) identifier identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 39 Issue: 1
  • Publication Date: 2022
  • Doi Number: 10.1002/mar.21540
  • Journal Name: Psychology and Marketing
  • Journal Indexes: Social Sciences Citation Index (SSCI), Scopus, IBZ Online, Periodicals Index Online, ABI/INFORM, Business Source Elite, Business Source Premier, Communication & Mass Media Index, Psycinfo
  • Page Numbers: pp.5-26
  • Keywords: consumer socialization, family communication, intergenerational influence, peer influence, subjective knowledge, sustainable consumer attitudes, sustainable consumer behaviors, GREEN CONSUMPTION BEHAVIOR, SHOPPING BEHAVIOR, METHOD BIAS, KNOWLEDGE, ADOLESCENTS, PARENTS, NORMS, INFORMATION, CHILDREN, PATTERNS
  • Middle East Technical University Affiliated: Yes


© 2021 The Authors. Psychology & Marketing published by Wiley Periodicals LLCIntergenerational research on sustainable consumption remains scarce, particularly in relation to which factors may affect the level of intergenerational similarity and the direction of intergenerational transmission. The present study addresses these gaps and adds to the growing body of literature in environmental consumer socialization by examining intergenerational influence on sustainable consumer attitudes and behaviors in a sample of 146 dyads comprised of mothers and college-age daughters. In the domain of intergenerational influence, we study two potential moderating factors suggested in past consumer research: communication effectiveness and peer conformity. Using the co-orientational model and nominal dyad method, we reveal the existence of intergenerational similarity in dyads' sustainable consumer attitudes and behaviors—after accounting for nominal effects— and show that stronger parent–child communication between mother–daughter pairs leads to greater intergenerational similarity, whereas stronger peer influence on daughters reduces intergenerational agreement. Our analysis further suggests the presence of reverse environmental socialization, in which intergenerational influence predominantly occurs from daughter to mother. Dyads' subjective knowledge regarding sustainable consumption provides empirical insights for this co-orientational model finding on reverse intergenerational transfer. Overall, outcomes of this study encourage marketing managers to leverage young-adult offspring in the process of communicating sustainable marketing strategies.