Applying valence framing to enhance the effect of information on transport-related carbon dioxide emissions

Avineri, E. and Waygood, O. (2013) Applying valence framing to enhance the effect of information on transport-related carbon dioxide emissions. Transportation Research Part A: Policy and Practice, 48. pp. 31-38. ISSN 0965-8564 Available from:

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The provision of information on transport-related carbon dioxide (CO2) to the traveller can be seen as an instrument to increase the likelihood of more sustainable choices being made by individuals. However, as transport-related CO2 emissions are largely seen as a ‘social’ cost rather than a ‘private’ cost to the individual, the behavioural engagement with and response to information on environmental effects of travel choices may therefore be limited. It is argued that framing, studied in a range of contexts, can be used to enhance the evaluation of choice attributes and promote desirable (more sustainable) choices. An experiment is reported that examine the effect of valence framing of amounts of CO2 emissions on the perceived differences between alternative travel modes. Through the use of positive and negative terms, the information was framed to focus attention either on the potential of a travel mode to provide environmental benefit (positive frame) or on its potential to reduce an environmental loss (negative frame). Survey participants’ estimates of CO2 amounts were compared for positive and negative framing of the same information using an ordered logit (OL) model. The findings imply that negative framing is more effective than positive framing in highlighting differences between CO2 amounts of alternative travel modes and therefore is more likely to influence travel-related choices.

Item Type:Article
Uncontrolled Keywords:carbon dioxide emissions, valence framing, travel information, behavioural change
Faculty/Department:Faculty of Environment and Technology
ID Code:16595
Deposited By: Dr E. Avineri
Deposited On:27 Mar 2012 10:50
Last Modified:06 Jun 2018 10:29

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