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Xu, Chen, Li and Menassa investigated environmentally responsible behavior in offices.  They determined that “while injunctive norms are an important predictor of behavioral intention for single-person offices, descriptive norms are an important one for shared offices. . . . perceived control over energy-saving and perceived ease of access to building control features have no direct impacts on energy-saving behaviors in single-person offices, while they have impacts on energy-saving behaviors in shared offices. . . . developing smaller areas in a shared office and enabling sub-space control can also increase the level of control and empower energy-saving behaviors for occupants. For example, an occupant leaving their space can turn off their own lights without affecting others.” Descriptive norms are described as “how co-workers are actually doing in saving energy” while injunctive norms are “what they believe their co-workers approve of.”  

Xiaojing Xu, Chien-Fei Chen, Da Li and Carol Menassa.  2020. “Energy Saving at Work:  Exploring the Role of Social Norms, and Perceived Control and Ascribed Responsibility in Different Office Layouts.”  Frontiers in Built Environment,

Pizzi and colleagues investigated the implications of experiencing retail environments physically and virtually.  They determined that “Whereas previous research demonstrated the importance of consumers' hedonic [pleasure-related] and utilitarian shopping orientations in traditional channels, this study examines the potential of a VR store to elicit hedonism and utilitarianism. . . . . Participants were exposed to the same shelf in a VR-based and a physical store. We found . . . VR elicits both utilitarianism and hedonism. . . . behaviors in the VR-based and physical stores compare quite well.”

Gabriele Pizzi, Daniele Scarpi,  Marco Pichierri, and Virginia Vannucci.  2019.  “Virtual Reality, Real Reactions?: Comparing Consumers’ Perceptions and Shopping Orientation Across Physical and Virtual-Reality Retail Stores.”  Computers in Human Behavior, vol. 96, pp. 1-12,

Usrey and colleagues investigated how being described as environmental responsible influences perceptions of product effectiveness.  Their work focuses on “the performance liability associated with green products, in which consumers perceive them as being less effective. This research examines the concept of ‘green understatement’ (i.e., communication of implicit green signals [not emphasizing green product attributes]) compared with ‘green emphasis’ (i.e., communication of explicit green signals [emphasizing green attributes]) in green product advertising as a strategy to enhance performance evaluations. . . . We suggest and show that implicit green signals are more effective in conditions under which consumers have more concerns about the product’s performance or have lower expectations about its greenness. More specifically, the results of two experimental studies show that implicit (versus explicit) communication about greenness leads to higher performance evaluations for products that are less commonly green . . . and for products that have an optional green mode.”

Bryan Usrey, Dayananda Palihawadana, Charalampos Saridakis and Aristeidis Theotokis.”How Downplaying Product Greenness Affects Performance Evaluations:  Examining the Effects of Implicit and Explicit Green Signals in Advertising.”  Journal of Advertising, in press,

Verhagen and teammates studied links between consumer in-store experiences and those they have online.  The investigators determined that “consumer evaluations of a firm’s online store have been found to be influenced by consumer interactions with the firm’s in‐store personnel. . . . we propose hypotheses and accordingly model in‐store personnel’s competence and friendliness as determinants of online store usefulness, online store enjoyment, and online store value. Using consumer data collected from two Dutch multichannel retailers, we test this model. . . . The results provide clear support for the model and confirm that consumers may use characteristics of in‐store personnel as analogies when evaluating a firm’s online store.” Additional links between other aspects of in-store and online experiences seem probable.

Tibert Verhagen, Willemijn van Dolen, and Jani Merikivi.  2019. “The Influence of In-Store Personnel on Online Store Value:  An Analogical Transfer Perspective.”  Psychology and Marketing, vol. 36, no. 3, pp. 161-174,

Coskun, Gupta, and Burpaz studied how in-store crowds and store neatness influence shoppers’ behaviors.  They report that   “each participant in one of the four conditions was shown visuals of a store. . . . in the low crowded conditions, two people were visible in the visuals but in the high crowded condition, 14 people were visible. In the low messy condition, merchandise was organized well on the displays and racks, but in the high messy condition, merchandise was scattered. . . .  Retailers may suffer from shoppers' avoidance intentions based on a complex store environment due to human crowding and merchandise messiness. . . . consumers are more likely to be irritated and inefficient when stores are highly crowded and messy. . .  consumers pursuing recreational shopping motivations are more likely to exhibit negative effects from retail shopper confusion on in-store exploration and time spent if the stores are crowded and messy.”  So, consumers are likely to try to avoid crowded messy stores and they are more likely to be irritated, inefficient shoppers when they’re in them.

Merve Coskun, Shipra Gupta, and Sebnem Burpaz.  2019.  “Human Crowding and Store Messiness:  Drivers of Retail Shopper Confusion and Behavioral Intentions.”  Journal of Consumer Behaviour, vol. 18, no. 4, pp. 313-331,

Glass staircases are regularly found in an assortment of environments. Kim and Steinfeld investigated the safety of winding glass staircases: “The purpose of this study was to assess the safety of a winding glass stairway by observing the behavior of stair users. . . .    Video observations were conducted in a retail store with a glass stairway (GS) and a shopping mall with a conventional stairway (CS). . . .  On the glass stairway, more users glanced down at the treads (GS: 87% vs. CS: 59%); fewer users diverted their gaze away from the stairs (GS: 54% vs. CS: 67%); and handrail use was higher (GS: 32% vs. CS: 24%). Incident rates were much higher on the glass stairway (6.2%) compared to the conventional stairway (0.7%). . . .  Recent laboratory research suggests that stairway users may behave more cautiously using stairways with glass treads but the results from this study demonstrate that the benefit of increased caution can be negated in real world conditions.”

Karen Kim and Edward Steinfeld.  2019.  “The Effects of Glass Stairways on Stair Users:  An Observational Study of Stairway Safety.”  Safety Science, vol. 113, pp. 30-36,

Krukar and Dalton evaluated how the display of visual artworks influences responses to them. They report that when members of the general public who were not artists, curators, or architects viewed a non-public, mock-up art gallery that “The more visible an artwork was, the more attention it attracted. Artworks that were more co-visible [simultaneously visible with other artworks], were viewed in a more haphazard way. However, more haphazard viewing strategy simultaneously resulted in higher cumulative viewing times and did not negatively affect the cognitive processing of artworks. Memory of artworks seems to be affected by the cumulative amount of attention allocated to them (including even short glimpses). . . . These methods demonstrated that what traditionally could be interpreted as a poor, ‘distracted’ visitor experience, had little negative impact on the cognitive processing of artworks. Visitors were able to adjust their viewing strategies inside a potentially less optimal space. This finding supports the planning of more diverse spatial interactions with the art.”

Jakub Krukar and Ruth Dalton. 2020.  “How the Visitors’ Cognitive Engagement is Driven (But Not Dictated) by the Visibility and Co-Visibility of Art Exhibits.”Frontiers in Psychology,

Chang and Baskin-Sommers set out to learn more about how a disorderly neighborhood can influence trust. They share that “Neighborhood disorder (i.e., physical or social decay) is associated with decreased trust, which reinforces criminal behavior for some individuals in these communities. . . . we examined the association between perceived neighborhood disorder and facial trustworthiness perception. . . .   findings suggest that similarly processing trustworthy and untrustworthy faces . . . may reflect an adaptation among those with higher perceived neighborhood disorder that mitigates against [diminishes] deviant behavior and contacts with the law.”

Shou-An Chang and Arielle Baskin-Sommers. 2020.   “Living in a Disadvantaged Neighborhood Affects Neural Processing of Facial Trustworthiness.”  Frontiers in Psychology, in press, doi: 10.3389/fpsyg.2020.00409

Shepley and colleagues investigated links between urban green space and nearby crime.  They determined via a literature review that “Green spaces typically comprised tree cover, parks and ground cover. Criminal behaviors typically included murder, assault, and theft. The majority of the research reviewed involved quantitative methods (e.g., comparison of green space area to crime data). We extracted multiple mechanisms from the literature that may account for the impact of green space on crime including social interaction and recreation, community perception, biophilic stress reduction, climate modulation, and spaces expressing territorial definition. . . . access to nature has a mitigating [diminishing] impact on violence in urban settings.”

Mardelle Shepley, Naomi Sachs, Hessam Sadatsafavi, Christine Fournier, and Kati Peditto.  2019.  “The Impact of Green Space on Violent Crime in Urban Environments:  An Evidence Synthesis.”  International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, vol. 16, no. 24, 5119,

Schlager, de Bellis and Hoegg studied links between weather conditions and product evaluations; their findings are relevant to any group presenting options to others. The Schalger team reports that “A large-scale field study and four experiments demonstrate that weather affects product valuation but only under particular conditions. . . . product valuation increases only if (1) the product is associated (vs. not associated) with a given weather state, as the match of product and weather facilitates mental simulation, and (2) the product is perceived as attractive (vs. unattractive). . . . We test three weather states—sunshine, snowfall, and rain—and find that our effects emerge for sunshine and snowfall but not for rain, as the latter does not enhance mental simulation.”

Tobias Schlager, Emanuel de Bellis and JoAndrea Hoegg. “How and When Weather Boosts Consumer Product Valuation.”  Journal of the Academy of Marketing Science, in press,


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