Social norms for flood preparedness
All by myself? Testing descriptive social norm-nudges to increase flood preparedness among homeowners
Abstract: Social norms are rules of behavior that are commonly approved by society. Nudges based on social norms (norm-nudges) are compelling interventions compared to traditional interventions, but they have to be carefully designed to be effective. This paper adds to the growing literature on the effectiveness of norm-nudges by analyzing the effectiveness of different norm-nudge messages with varying transparency on individual flood preparedness. We test two empirical norm-nudge frames with a large sample in two European countries, to evaluate the possible interactions between norm-nudge effectiveness, individual characteristics and intercultural differences. We contrast these empirical norm-nudge treatments with a control treatment and a norm focusing treatment, where respondents are first asked to guess what other respondents would do, before making a decision relevant for their own payoff. We conclude with policy recommendations about norm-nudge messages in the context of communicating risk reduction.
Working paper available here.