Thanks are due to Melbourne Water and the Australian Water Research Advisory Council for providing much of the funding for this project. The contributions of Hugh Duncan of the Division of Water Supply within Melbourne Water were also greatly appreciated.
Residential Water Use: Predicting and Reducing Consumption1
Article first published online: 31 JUL 2006
Journal of Applied Social Psychology
Volume 24, Issue 2, pages 136–158, January 1994
How to Cite
Aitken, C. K., Mcmahon, T. A., Wearing, A. J. and Finlayson, B. L. (1994), Residential Water Use: Predicting and Reducing Consumption. Journal of Applied Social Psychology, 24: 136–158. doi: 10.1111/j.1559-1816.1994.tb00562.x
- Issue published online: 31 JUL 2006
- Article first published online: 31 JUL 2006
This project had two goals: to explain variation in residential water consumption and to evaluate methods of encouraging residents to reduce their consumption. Survey data for both studies were collected by mail questionnaire in early 1991, and water consumption figures were recorded between June and August of that year. In Study 1 (n = 264) a three-variable regression model (number of residents, clothes washing machine loads, and property value) accounted for 60% of the variance. Attitudes, habits and values were very poor predictors of water consumption. In Study 2 (n =226) households were divided into three treatment groups: feedback only, feedback and dissonance, and a control group. Repeated-measures ANOVA revealed that high consumers receiving dissonance and feedback or feedback alone had significantly reduced their water consumption in the treatment period. The implications of these findings are discussed.