Date of Award


Degree Name

Master of Arts



First Advisor

Dr. R. Wayne Fuqua

Second Advisor

Dr. Alan Poling

Third Advisor

Dr. Lisa Baker

Access Setting

Masters Thesis-Open Access


Several methods for increasing recycling have been presented in the psychology literature. However, many rely on incentive systems that require individual response monitoring for differential delivery of consequences, thus rendering them prohibitively expensive on a community-wide scale. This study examined the effects of three community interventions which may circumvent this limitation: public commitment, group feedback, and a combination of both. The Commitment Only intervention produced no substantial increase in recycling when superimposed upon a curbside recycling baseline. The Feedback Only intervention and the Combined Intervention produced increases of 25.47% and 40.00%, respectively. A no-intervention Control Group decreased in amount recycled by 4.99% over the same period. A cost/benefit analysis indicates that the successful interventions could recover the costs of implementation only if the interventions were conducted on a community-wide scale and if the effects maintained for long periods.

Included in

Psychology Commons