Citizens’ perceptions on water conservation policies and the role of social capital

Jones, Nikoleta; Evangelinos, Konstantinos; Gaganis, Petros and Polyzou, Eugenia (2011). Citizens’ perceptions on water conservation policies and the role of social capital. Water Resources Management, 25(2) pp. 509–522.



Planning and implementing environmental policies for the sustainable management of water resources is a challenging task. In order to improve the effectiveness of these policies it is essential to explore their social implications. The present article aims to investigate environmental policies focusing on domestic water conservation and their interconnection with social capital elements. In particular, by means of an empirical study conducted in an insular community of Greece, citizens’ perceptions are explored concerning the restrictions imposed from different environmental policy instruments for water consumption and their perceived level of effectiveness. Furthermore, the influence of social capital parameters on these perceptions is investigated. Aggregated indicators of social capital are estimated with Confirmatory Factor Analysis measuring social and institutional trust, participation in social networks and compliance with social norms. Through the results of ordinal regression models it is evident that significant connections exist between elements of social capital and perceptions of citizens towards water consumption policies.

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