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Towards an Empirical Understanding of Ethical Consumption in Southeast Asia

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Business and Human Rights in Asia

Abstract

This chapter examines the role of ethical consumption in sustainable development, following the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Alongside State action to address business and human rights the underexplored role of ethical consumption is discussed. SDG #12 on responsible consumption and protection touches upon ethical consumerism, broadening the focus to include the individual and acknowledging the agenda-setting potential of consumers through ethical consumerism. To complement or to overcome lacuna in State initiatives, can ethical consumption, largely understudied, offer a path forward? Research suggests differences between consumers’ intentions to consume ethically, and their actual purchasing behavior—an “attitude-behavior gap”—and that the marketplace for ethical consumerism is limited to a niche group. This chapter examines ethical consumer behaviour and its potential to drive change in corporate responsibility. There is a need to study the behavior and decision-making processes of regional consumers. This conceptual chapter will present preliminary observations on the hypothesis that ethical consumerism in Southeast Asia remains a highly contextual choice.

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Correspondence to Daniel Polomski .

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Polomski, D., Klukas, E., Mullen, M. (2021). Towards an Empirical Understanding of Ethical Consumption in Southeast Asia. In: Gomez, J., Ramcharan, R. (eds) Business and Human Rights in Asia. Palgrave Macmillan, Singapore. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-981-15-7273-9_11

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