Explaining the Link between Education and Green Behavior in the Philippines: The Role of Knowledge and Climate Change Perception
Roman Hoffmann, Raya Muttarak
Wittgenstein Centre on Demography and Global Human Capital, Vienna, Austria

Abstract

In recent years, changing lifestyle, consumption and mobility patterns in low-and middle-countries have contributed to a remarkable rise in carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases responsible for the warming of the planet. Despite its increasing relevance, there is a lack of understanding of factors influencing the environmental consciousness and behavior of people from the developing world.  Whilst there is some evidence showing that education is associated with pro-environmental behavior, little is known about the mechanisms through which education influences decision making. Based on a face-to-face survey of 1,064 households in Manila, Philippines, this paper examines the relationship and empirically identifies the pathways explaining education effects. We find that the propensity to carry out pro-environmental behavior e.g. planting trees, recycling and proper waste management is positively related with education. An additional year of schooling significantly increases the probability of pro-environmental actions by 3.3%. Using the KHB method to decompose the effect of education, it is found that education influences green behavior mainly through increasing awareness and knowledge about climate change. This study hence provides not only solid empirical evidence on positive external effects of education, but also improves our understanding of the potential mechanisms explaining why and how these externalities arise.