Determinants of the attitudes towards green economy during the COVID-19 pandemic
Background. The development of environmental consciousness is a necessary part of the full development of society. The pandemic caused by COVID-19 has increased attention to the problems of man's relationship with nature, green behavior of both the consumer and the producer. Attitudes towards a green economy are especially important to study in countries rich in natural resources, as there are more opportunities to overcome the contradictions between economic growth and green innovation.
Objective. The purpose of this study was to identify the determinants of Russian attitudes toward a green economy during the COVID-19 pandemic. The main hypothesis was that demographic factors determine attitudes toward a green economy in different ways, including the willingness to take actions in support of it, and acknowledgement of the connection of the need for green transformations with the pandemic.
Design. Subjects were given the questionnaire "Green Economy" which contains 19 statements with which they needed to express their degree of agreement on a 5-point Likert scale. Potential determinants of their attitudes toward a green economy were collected using an additional questionnaire, which included indicators of gender, age, family and professional status, religiosity, income level, education level, and place of residence (locality). The study involved 874 respondents from the Russian Federation (62.4% female; 37.6% male; the average age was 37.34 years).
Results. The results of a regression analysis showed that women, people with increased religiosity (but not too religious), younger people, and students and employees of public organizations (as opposed to employees of state and commercial organizations), as well as people from small towns or rural areas,were more positive about the idea of transition to a green economy.
Conclusion.The belief that the pandemic situation has reinforced the need for a transition to a green economy was influenced by gender, degree of religiosity, and place of residence. Women, to a greater extent than men, as well as people who were more religious and lived in small towns and rural areas, were more acutely aware of the impact of the pandemic on the actualization of environmental problems.
Keywords: Attitudes towards green economy/ COVID-19 pandemic/ the "Green Economy" questionnaire/ environmental attitudes/ pro-environmental behavior