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Exploring Citizens’ Actions in Mitigating Climate Change and Moving toward Urban Circular Economy. A Multilevel Approach

Adriana AnaMaria Davidescu (), Simona Apostu and Andreea Paul ()
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Adriana AnaMaria Davidescu: Department of Statistics and Econometrics, Bucharest University of Economic Studies, Romana Square, 15–17 Dorobanți St., Sector 1, 010552 Bucharest, Romania
Andreea Paul: Department of International Economic Relations, Bucharest University of Economic Studies, 15–17 Dorobanti St., Sector 1, 010552 Bucharest, Romania

Energies, 2020, vol. 13, issue 18, 1-46

Abstract: Urbanization and climate change are requiring cities to find novel pathways to a sustainable future, and therefore the urban context may accelerate the conversion to a circular economy. In this sense, climate change is a considerable threat to the environment, affecting both human and natural systems, and in this context individuals have a very important role. Therefore, the paper aims to investigate, on the one hand, what determines people to undertake specific actions in fighting climate change and, on the other hand, what determines some people to engage in adopting multiple actions exhibiting extra mitigation behaviour compared to others, paving the way to an urban circular economy. In order to do that, multilevel logistic regression analysis using hierarchical data (individuals grouped in counties), reflecting group variability and group-level characteristics effects on outcomes at individual level has been applied. Special attention was given to modernisation thesis validation, stipulating that citizens from more developed and modernized countries are expected to manifest a higher level of extra mitigation compared to inhabitants of less-modernized nations. The empirical results revealed the positive association of pro-environmental factors, socio-demographic and economic factors with both specific and extra mitigation behaviour in fighting climate change. An important finding of the empirical research highlighted the validation of the modernisation thesis, even if partially, and the reinforcement of the modernisation thesis impact on the extra mitigation behaviour determined by the urban area segmentation. The extra commitment behaviour reflected by citizens’ multiple actions in fighting climate change ensures progress to a circular economy through its contribution to waste reduction, eco-shopping increase, on eco-friendly transportation increase or domestic energy reduction. We believe that a shift in citizens’ attitude towards climate change is needed, taking into account that a lot must be done” to effectively respond to climate change, paving the way for the circular economy.

Keywords: circular economy; urbanization and climate change; multilevel logistic regression; citizens; extra mitigation behavior; EU member states (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: Q Q0 Q4 Q40 Q41 Q42 Q43 Q47 Q48 Q49 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Date: 2020
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