Mindfulness and Sustainable Consumption: A Meditation-based Intervention Study Exploring the Mediating Power of Resourcefulness and Prosocial Tendency

Rocio Rodriguez Martinez & Verena Doris Singer

Student thesis: Master thesis


Mindfulness and its cultivation, rooted in ancient Buddhist meditative practices, has the power to transfer people into an openhearted, non-judgmental, and accepting mind state toward present moment experiences. A growing body of research has identified some highly effective pathways through which mindfulness can enhance consumers’ engagement in sustainable consumption and thereby help tackle a challenge of global priority. Of these pathways, the mechanism of prosocial behavior and connectedness as well as resourcefulness, which is the extent to which an individual feels abundant in their personal resources, have received the least attention in research so far. Thus, the present study aims at providing a deeper understanding of these pathways and at advancing infant empirical insights into the role and power of resourcefulness and prosocial tendencies. Building on advances in research on mindfulness, sustainable consumption, consumer behavior and psychology, we propose that state mindfulness stimulated by a short loving-kindness meditation practice encourages sustainable consumption through resourcefulness and prosocial tendency. Thus, a randomized, meditation-based intervention study with an active control group is conducted to test the predictions of this serial mediation model. We did not find significant support for our model presumably due to resource limits and restricted conditions under which the experiment was run. However, the methodological approach and design of this study is much sought-after by scholars calling for more robust empirical evidence in this field of research. Based on these outcomes, we offer contributions to theory on the pathways of mindfulness to sustainable consumption. We also derive relevant implications for public policy makers and managers in their pursuit of sustainability-related goals. Limitations and promising avenues for future research are discussed.

EducationsMSc in Brand and Communications Management, (Graduate Programme) Final Thesis
Publication date2021
Number of pages173
SupervisorsLeticia Vedolin & Jesper Clement