Some Politicians Are Waging a War on Sustainability. New Research Shows US Consumers of All Persuasions, From Gen Zers to Boomers, Are Going in the Opposite Direction.

Tensie Whelan

By Tensie Whelan and Randi Kronthal-Sacco

At a time when political factions are decrying corporate efforts to operate more sustainably by protecting the environment, it may come as a surprise to learn that most Americans, regardless of party, income level, geographic location, age, or gender, want to purchase sustainable products.

Our research at NYU Stern Center for Sustainable Business (CSB) has found that not only are sustainability-marketed products growing twice as fast as conventionally marketed products, but they are also selling at a premium of 28%, on average. We also found that certain sustainability messages will drive significant increases in purchase intent, across political parties, age, income level, and location.

Partnering with Edelman and nine iconic brands, CSB tested messages across sectors on core product attributes as well as a host of environmental sustainability messages. We invited consumers to choose among the messages, highlighting which ones were more likely to drive purchase intent.

Read the full Fortune article.
Tensie Whelan is a Clinical Professor of Business and Society and Director of the Center for Sustainable Business.