A cross-cultural comparative study of sustainability consciousness between students in Taiwan and Sweden

Teresa Berglund*, Niklas Gericke, Jelle Boeve-de Pauw, Daniel Olsson, Tzu Chau Chang

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

    20 Citations (Scopus)


    Education for sustainable development (ESD) is promoted as one important component in the endeavor toward sustainable development. Goal 4 in the Sustainable Development Goals (UN in Sustainable development goals—17 goals to transform our world, 2017) in particular targets the role of ESD in this respect. The importance of cultural specificity in ESD is emphasized in numerous international policy documents, but there are few cross-cultural studies that focus on the broad context of sustainable development and ESD. The current study investigates the sustainability consciousness of grade 12 students (age 18–19) in Taiwan (N = 617) and Sweden (N = 583) and discusses the implications for ESD policy and practice. The findings indicate that significant differences exist between the two samples, both with respect to their sustainability consciousness and within the three sub-constructs of knowingness, attitudes and self-reported behaviors. The differences are considered in light of the cultural value orientations of the East Asian and Western European regions. Implications for ESD are discussed from the perspective of cultural specificity.

    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)6287-6313
    Number of pages27
    JournalEnvironment, Development and Sustainability
    Issue number7
    Publication statusPublished - 2020 Oct 1


    • Attitudes
    • Behavior
    • Culture
    • Education
    • Knowledge
    • Sustainability consciousness
    • Sustainable development

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Geography, Planning and Development
    • Economics and Econometrics
    • Management, Monitoring, Policy and Law


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