An Integrated Moral Obligation Model for Landowner Conservation Norms

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26 Scopus citations


This study applies an integrated moral obligation model to examine the role of environmental and cultural values, and beliefs in the activation of landowner conservation norms. Data for this study were collected through a self-administered survey of riparian landowners in two Minnesota watersheds: Sand Creek and Vermillion River watersheds. Study findings suggest that collectivistic and biospheric–altruistic values form the bases for the activation of personal norms. Further, beliefs about local responsibility and ability to act influence personal norms to protect water resources. Findings suggest that landowners’ personal norms of water conservation are more likely to be activated by conservation strategies that appeal to biospheric–altruistic and collectivistic values, emphasize adverse consequences of water pollution, highlight water resource protection as a local responsibility, and provide the resources needed to protect water resources.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)212-227
Number of pages16
JournalSociety and Natural Resources
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 1 2017


  • Human dimensions
  • pro-environmental behavior
  • social dilemma
  • watershed management


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