Americans’ perceived and actual understanding of energy

Southwell, B.G., Murphy, J.J., DeWaters, J.E., LeBaron, P.A.

To address the lack of information about American’s perceived and actual knowledge related to energy, RTI researchers measured three concepts: perceived understanding of energy, demonstrated energy knowledge, and the ability to interpret an energy bill. Results suggest that public understanding of energy is multifaceted, and perceived understanding is not directly equivalent to actual understanding in many cases. Results of this survey provide insight into individual and household energy consumption behavior, which has implications for future policy and intervention.


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