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Protection motivation theory: a proposed theoretical extension and moving beyond rationality-the case of flooding

Oakley, Matthew, Himmelweit, Sam Mohun, Leinster, Paul and Casado, Mónica Rivas (2020) Protection motivation theory: a proposed theoretical extension and moving beyond rationality-the case of flooding. Water (Switzerland), 12 (7). ISSN 2073-4441

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Identification Number: 10.3390/W12071848


Despite the significant financial and non-financial costs of household flooding, and the availability of products that can reduce the risk or impact of flooding, relatively few consumers choose to adopt these products. To help explain this, we combine the existing theoretical literature with evidence from 20 one-to-one discussions and three workshops with key stakeholders, as well as five round tables, to draw practical evidence of actual responses to flood risk. This analysis leads us to propose an extension to Protection Motivation Theory (PMT), which more accurately captures the decision-making process of consumers by highlighting the role of 'ownership appraisal'. We then assess the extent to which behavioral biases impact on this revised framework. By highlighting the interaction with an augmented model of PMT and behavioral biases, the paper sheds light on potential reasons behind the fact that consumers are unlikely to adopt property-level flood resilience measures and identifies strategies to increase flood protection. The Augmented PMT suggests that policymakers might focus on increasing the Ownership Appraisal element, both directly and by targeting the creation of more supportive social norms. The work presented here opens up a wide range of areas for future research in the field.

Item Type: Article
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2020 The Authors
Divisions: Social Policy
Subjects: G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GB Physical geography
H Social Sciences > HM Sociology
G Geography. Anthropology. Recreation > GE Environmental Sciences
Date Deposited: 05 Aug 2020 14:24
Last Modified: 11 Jul 2024 18:12

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