Understanding determinants of the intention to purchase rhino horn in Vietnam through the Theory of Planned Behaviour and the Theory of Interpersonal Behaviour

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Hoai Nam Dang Vu, Martin Reinhardt Nielsen


Demand for rhino horn in Asian markets is driving a rhino poaching crisis in Africa. This study examined rhino horn demand using the theory of planned behaviour and the theory of interpersonal behaviour. We conducted a survey of 427 individuals in Hanoi, Vietnam, including 281 rhino horn users and 146 non-users. We empirically tested all constructs of the two theories predicting intention to purchase, including attitude, subjective norms, social factors, perceived behavioral control, facilitating conditions, affect, and habit using structural equation modelling. Perceived behavioral control and habit were the sole determinants of the intention to purchase rhino horn. Respondents with higher disposable income and better knowledge about how to purchase and use rhino horn and those with previous experience using rhino horn were more likely to intend to purchase this good. However, frequent users had a lower intention to purchase rhino horn in the near future than those having used rhino horn only once or a few times. We discuss the implications of our results for policy-making and the informed design of behaviour modification strategies to reduce rhino horn demand. Our study also highlights the benefit of combining different behavioral theories in studying sensitive behaviours such as the consumption of illegal luxury wildlife products.




Psychology, Social and Behavioral Sciences, Social Psychology


attitudes, behavioural control, beliefs, habit, rhino horn, social factors


Published: 2021-04-12 08:54


CC-By Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International