The uptake of electric cars in the Amsterdam area can cause capacity problems for the electricity network. To prevent such problems, people need to make more sustainable use of their vehicles, for example through smart charging and the generation of sustainable energy. The project tests if consumers are more likely to adopt these complementary sustainable energy behaviours if they adopted an electric vehicle for environmental reasons rather than other reasons (e.g., financial), as this will strengthen their environmental self-identity. But what strategies can be employed to strengthen environmental self-identity when environmental reasons did not play a key role in the decision to adopt an electric vehicle?

The main research questions in this project are: How to promote sustainable smart energy systems in the Amsterdam area by promoting complementary sustainable behaviours among people who adopted an electric vehicle for non-environmental reasons? How to develop profitable business models that facilitate sustainable use of electric vehicles?We are testing the crucial role of pro-environmental self-identity, which means that people display more environmentally-friendly behaviour if they consider themselves to be environmentally-friendly. We will test how people who did not purchase an electric vehicle for environmental reasons can be encouraged to adopt environmentally-friendly behaviour by increasing their pro-environmental self-identity. Based on the results, business models will be developed to stimulate such behaviour.