Understanding the Determinants of Consumer Composting Behavior1


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    We are grateful to Nadine Anderson, Jeff Gosselin, Ashwin Joshi, Meredith Laurence, Yvonne Lee, Carolyn McNaughton, and Janet Pearson for their assistance with data collection and coding. The assistance of Malcolm Morris and Joe Davis of the Kingston Area Recycling Corporation is also gratefully acknowledged. This research was supported by grants from the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada, the Advisory Research Council Queen's University, and the Research Program, Queen's School of Business.

Correspondence concerning this article should be addressed to Shirley Taylor, School of Business, Queen's University, Kingston, Ontario K7L 3N6, Canada.


This study compared 3 models of waste management behavior: (a) a theory of reasoned action model, (b) an environmental belief-behavior model, and (c) an integrated waste management model which is based on the theory of planned behavior. The three models were compared using data from a sample of over 1,400 individual respondents who each completed a survey and a 2-week diary of their consumer composting activities. Overall, the results suggest that while the environmental beliefs-behavior model and the integrated waste management models both fit the data well, the integrated waste management model provided better predictive power and offers significant insight into the factors that influence composting behavior.