Environmental and Resource Economics

, Volume 70, Issue 4, pp 835–860 | Cite as

Moving Toward Greener Societies: Moral Motivation and Green Behaviour

  • Lorenzo Cerda PlanasEmail author


I provide an alternative explanation for why societies exhibit varied environmental behaviours. I use a Kantian moral approach at a microeconomic level. I show that two identical societies (in terms of income level and political system) might follow different paths with respect to their “green” behaviour. Additionally, I identify tipping points that could nudge a society from a polluting behaviour to a green one. I find that the perception of environment within the society can be an important factor in this shift.


Green behaviour Kantian morale Moral motivation Tipping points 

JEL Classification

C62 D64 D72 H41 Q50 



I want to thank Bertrand Wigniolle, Eugenio Figueroa, and Scott Barrett for their invaluable help and support. I would also like to thank Maria Kuecken and Alessandra Pizzo for their thorough revision, as well as the various conference and seminar participants, two anonymous referees and the editor who have helped me formulate and articulate these ideas.

Supplementary material


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media B.V. 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of Paris 1 Panthéon - SorbonneParisFrance
  2. 2.Santiago CentroChile

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