Non-Economic Motivation for Contingent Values: Rights and Attitudinal Beliefs in the Willingness To Pay for Environmental Improvements

Clive L. Spash


This paper reports on a national CVM survey administered in combination with a psychometric scale on pro-social environmental attitudes to test for non-economic motivations for WTP. The multi-item scale measures biospheric, altruistic, and egoistic motives, and analyzes their association with rights-based (deontological) and consequential (utilitarian) ethics. I test hypotheses concerning the existence of distinct value orientations, and the relationships between attitudes, ethics, protest bids, and WTP. Contrary to some recent claims based upon convenience samples, environmental attitudes are found to be significant in explaining intended WTP; this is associated with an egoistic motive and rights-based, rather than consequential, beliefs. (JEL Q00, D46, D64)