Dolnicar, Sara; Hurlimann, Anna; and Nghiem, Long D., 2010, The effect of information on public acceptance - the case of water from alternative sources, Journal of Environmental Management, 91(6), 1288-1293.
This study aims to provide conclusive evidence that information about water from alternative sources increases public acceptance. We conducted an experiment with 1000 Australian respondents asking them about their acceptance of recycled and desalinated water for a range of purposes under two conditions: 1) no information provided and 2) information about the production process provided. Results indicate that both for desalinated and recycled water the stated likelihood of use increases significantly if people are provided with information about the production process. This has major implications for public policy makers indicating that providing factual information (as opposed to persuasive campaigns) will increase public support of water augmentation projects.