I’m working on a change management presentation, and have been looking for some of the social norms research – especially at the practice of using messages that help people understand that the majority of the group is already doing the desired behavior.
Before I close the tabs, I thought I’d collect the most interesting links here (that’s all I have time for today!).
Wikipedia entry (which defines it, and rightly points out that outcomes are uneven for this approach) – https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Social_norms_approach
Environmental behaviors and social norms (This is a nice summary paper of using social norms in environmental campaigns, influencing behaviors like littering) – http://184.108.40.206/ijsc/docs/artikel/03/3_03_IJSC_Research_Griskevicius.pdf
Thermostats with social feedback (This is one of the actual papers on this pretty widely known example) – http://www.carlsonschool.umn.edu/assets/118375.pdf
Social norms and teen smoking (And feet. An interesting television commercial aimed at social norms and teen smoking) – http://nudges.org/2011/06/14/new-social-norm-campaign-on-teen-smoking-in-texas/
Social norms and tax compliance (using a general appeal vs a social norm appeal to improve tax compliance) – http://www.socialnorms.org/CaseStudies/taxcompliance.php
More social norms and tax compliance (HBR article, though you need registration/subscription to see the whole thing) – http://hbr.org/2012/10/98-of-hbr-readers-love-this-article/ar/1
Social norms and binge drinking (a write up of one of the earlier studies that looked at perceived and actual norms for college students’ drinking behaviors) – http://socialnorms.org/pdf/socnormapproach.pdf