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Theory of Planned Behavior

  • By: Christian A. Klöckner
  • In: Encyclopedia of Consumer Culture
  • Edited by: Dale Southerton
  • Subject:Sociology of Consumption, Consumer Psychology, Consumer Culture

Theory of planned behavior is one of the most successful theories in social psychology; the theory aims to explain people's behavior in various domains—among them consumer behavior—by four psychological variables: intentions, attitudes, subjective norms, and perceived behavioral control.

The theory was introduced in an article by Icek Ajzen in 1991 and builds on the social psychological tradition of attitude research. It is an extended version of the preceding theory of reasoned action, developed by Ajzen and Martin Fishbein in the 1970s. Whereas the theory of reasoned action proved to be insufficient in many situations, the theory of planned behavior received strong empirical support since its publication and is still relevant for the explanation of consumer behavior. Although the theory was developed in the cultural context of ...

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