PhD Oral

E-IPER Dissertation Defense: Jennifer Wang "Putting Individuals in Context: Interdisciplinary and Behavioral Science Approaches for Understanding Environmental and Human Health Decisions "

Sponsored by Emmett Interdisciplinary Program in Environment & Resources


Wednesday, May 2, 2018
10:00 am – 11:00 am
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Y2E2 299

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Attention to addressing human and environmental health issues is often directed towards scientific and technological solutions. However, ensuring the successful uptake and implementation of these solutions requires accounting for the critical interplay of context-specific and individual-level factors that influence human behavior and decision-making. This dissertation presents two cases that demonstrate the value of incorporating contextual and social factors in understanding individual-level attitudes and decisions. I will focus on the second of these cases for this presentation: business school students and their developing attitudes towards corporate environmental performance. I will present data from a global survey of MBA students combined with in-depth interview data from one business school campus to examine how social interactions, institutional signaling, and individual-level psychological processes influence MBA students as they negotiate and come to develop specific attitudes about corporate environmental sustainability. By understanding how MBAs form expectations around their own roles as business professionals and their responsibilities for addressing corporate environmental performance, this work contributes more broadly to our understanding of how to further engage the private sector in promoting and contributing to environmental health and sustainability.