Exploring the experiences and adoption of sustainable laundry technologies by older adults

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For abstract and citation:

This study used the attitude/adoption gap concept from Rogers’ (1995) Diffusion of Innovations theory to explore why some older consumers are not quick to adopt front-loading washers despite their favorable attitudes toward the technology. An online survey of 114 older consumers found that 18% currently owned front-loading washers and 39% of the top-loading washer owners intended to purchase a front-loading washer. Chi-square analyses with those who were willing to adopt a front-loading washer versus those who intended to continue adopting top-loading washers found that the future adopters were significantly more likely to report difficulty of transferring wet clothes from their toploading machine. The potential adopter group also had a higher income. However, a majority of participants from both groups were unclear about water and energy cost savings created by the front-loading technology. It suggests that improved communication about the sustainability benefits of the technology will be important to decrease the attitude/adoption gap.

Ahn, M., Hustvedt, G. and Emmel, J. (2013) Exploring the experiences and adoption of sustainable laundry technologies by older adults. The International Journal of Aging and Society. 3 (1): 1-13.

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