Association of Marketing Theory and Practice Proceedings 2020

Document Type

Conference Proceeding

Conference Track

Supply Chain Management/ International Marketing/ Business to Business Marketing


The Future of Electronics Consumption and the Role of the Sustainable Consumer

Jennifer D. Henderson

University of South Alabama


A recent area of ethical, environmental, and social responsibility concern is in regard to smartphones and related electronic devices. Specifically, these products have been linked to generating large quantities of electronic waste (e-waste) and are increasingly produced under questionable working conditions. These social and environmental impacts can potentially be mitigated through the adoption of sustainably produced devices. However, although we are years into the modern sustainability movement, there still exists an attitude-behaviors gap where many consumers report that they are concerned about environmental and social responsibility issues, but they fail to translate these concerns into purchase behaviors.

This paper examines the factors that could drive consumers to purchase electronic devices that have been manufactured by sustainable processes. A conceptual model is proposed that is comprised of two primary constructs: consciousness for sustainable consumption and likelihood to purchase. The value consciousness of consumers is proposed as a factor that moderates consumers’ likelihood to engage in purchase behaviors. While the constructs have been examined in various ways in previous research, they have not been joined together to study behavioral implications in the electronics industry. These insights will prove valuable to marketers as they navigate the new, muddy waters of closed-loop supply chains and sustainable devices.


Jennifer Henderson is a PhD student at the University of South Alabama. She is an Instructor of Information Systems and Decision Sciences at Louisiana State University. She received a Master of Business Administration degree from Southeastern Louisiana University, specializing in Management Information Systems. Her research interests include supply chain management, sustainability, digital disruption, and technology adoption.