Association for Behavior Analysis International

The Association for Behavior Analysis International® (ABAI) is a nonprofit membership organization with the mission to contribute to the well-being of society by developing, enhancing, and supporting the growth and vitality of the science of behavior analysis through research, education, and practice.


47th Annual Convention; Online; 2021

All times listed are Eastern time (GMT-4 at the time of the convention in May).

Event Details

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Panel #78
CE Offered: BACB
Diversity submission Behavioral Barriers to Climate Sustainability: A Challenge to Our Field
Saturday, May 29, 2021
12:00 PM–12:50 PM
Area: CSS/PCH; Domain: Translational
CE Instructor: Susan M. Schneider, Ph.D.
Chair: Susan M. Schneider (Root Solutions)
CRISS WILHITE (California State University Fresno)
BRIAN JADRO (New England Behavior Analysts for Sustainability)

The climate crisis challenges all of us to step up our sustainability efforts as soon as possible: The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change warns that global greenhouse gas emissions must be cut by nearly 50% by 2030. How can we help accomplish the necessary changes using behavior-analytic principles? A high-profile study by the American Psychological Association found that two of the major behavioral barriers to more individual climate action are a sense of futility, and the difficulty of transitioning to new green habits (see the 2009 report from the APA Task Force on the Interface Between Psychology and Global Climate Change). Both of these - motivation and habits - are areas where behavior analysis offers major contributions. How can we build on what we have already accomplished in climate action? How can we transfer what has worked in our related areas of strength? Each of the panelists is experienced in behavioral sustainability, and will offer a few suggestions. Opening the floor to the audience, we will attempt to put together a plan of action.

Instruction Level: Basic
Target Audience:

All behavior analysts concerned about climate change and environmental sustainability

Learning Objectives: 1. Attendees will be able to describe examples of behavior analytic research on sustainability 2. Attendees will be able to describe how behavior analysis methods can be employed to help motivate sustainable behaviors. 3. Attendees will be able to describe how behavior analysis methods can facilitate the transition from carbon-heavy to green habits.
Keyword(s): barriers, Climate change,, habits, sustainability



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Modifed by Eddie Soh