Principles and popularity: The interplay of moral norms and descriptive norms in the context of volunteerism
Article first published online: 20 FEB 2012
©2012 The British Psychological Society
British Journal of Social Psychology
Volume 51, Issue 4, pages 762–771, December 2012
How to Cite
Smith, M. K. and Masser, B. M. (2012), Principles and popularity: The interplay of moral norms and descriptive norms in the context of volunteerism. British Journal of Social Psychology, 51: 762–771. doi: 10.1111/j.2044-8309.2012.02095.x
- Issue published online: 5 DEC 2012
- Article first published online: 20 FEB 2012
- Received 14 May 2011; revised version received 2 January 2012.
Can a moral norm be manipulated and if so, how does a manipulated moral norm interact with a descriptive norm to impact on behavioural intentions? The present research addressed these questions in three studies. Study 1a and 1b demonstrated the validity of a manipulation designed to activate a moral norm for volunteer activity. In Study 2, activating a moral norm for volunteering strengthened intentions to volunteer and inhibited intentions to conform to a descriptive norm. Conceptual and applied implications of activating a moral norm are discussed.