Get access

THE GLOBALIZATION OF ENVIRONMENTAL CONCERN AND THE LIMITS OF THE POSTMATERIALIST VALUES EXPLANATION: Evidence from Four Multinational Surveys

Authors


*Riley E. Dunlap, Department of Sociology, Oklahoma State University, Stillwater, OK 74078; e-mail: rdunlap@okstate.edu

Abstract

Conventional wisdom has long held that widespread citizen concern for environmental quality is limited to wealthy nations. Both academics and policymakers assume that residents of poor nations are too preoccupied with satisfying their “material” needs to support the “postmaterialist” value of environmental protection. This view was challenged by results of Gallup's 24-nation “Health of the Planet” (HOP) survey conducted in 1992, as the HOP found highly inconsistent and often negative correlations between national affluence and environmental concern. The current article compares results from three waves of the “World Values Survey” (WVS) to those of the HOP. When appropriate measures of environmental concern are employed, the WVS results generally replicate those of the HOP, as in all three waves such concern correlates inconsistently with national affluence. The overall results suggest that citizen concern for the environment is not dependent on national affluence, nor on affluence-based postmaterialist values.

Get access to the full text of this article

Ancillary