How does real-world consumer behaviour deviate from that predicted by rational choice theory? This project compiled insights emerging from the parallel disciplines of behavioural economics as well as commercial and social marketing with respect to sustainable consumption in Europe. The project analysed the applicability of these disciplines to European environmental consumer policy. As a result, the project formulated real-world recommendations for environmental consumer policy in five specific areas: food and drink, consumer electronics, vehicles, white goods and energy.
Despite three generations of rural development policies and with the 4th starting in 2007, rural areas still face considerable problems. Many problems of European societies such as an ageing population, high unemployment rates, social disparities and the lack of adaptive potential to the global market are more pronounced in rural areas than elsewhere. To overcome these problems, it is essential to link public, private and inter-sectoral initiatives to foster innovation. RAPIDO has been established to analyse current best practices concerning the development of innovation in agriculture, forestry, the food sector and the wider rural areas, as well as to analyse methods to transfer knowledge to different target groups.
One of the key elements of the latest 2003 reform of the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) is compulsory compliance with environmental, food safety, animal welfare, and animal and plant health standards. Additionally it is required that farmers maintain their farmland in good agricultural and environmental condition as a condition for receiving direct payments. The project will focus on the investigation of the value-added resulting from introducing cross-compliance as a tool to improve compliance with existing standards; and the investigation of the cost implications and competition effects of compliance to EU standards on the world market.