It is a common approach to explain choice option attractiveness by beliefs about the choice option. The means'end chain model is used to distinguish between various types of beliefs, depending on whether the belief links the choice option to attributes, consequences, or values related to the choice option. The laddering method is used to elicit beliefs of all three types for a choice between conventional and organic pork. As a benchmark, beliefs were also elicited in the traditional way advocated by Ajzen and Fishbein. Using both sets of beliefs in a subsequent survey, it was shown that the beliefs elicited by the laddering method increase explanatory power with regard to choice option attractiveness beyond the beliefs elicited by the Ajzen and Fishbein method, and that this additional explanatory power was due to those beliefs which relate the choice option to concepts with a higher level of abstraction (consequences and values).
Journal of Economic Psychology, 2005, Vol 26, Issue 2, p. 223-241
Attitude theory; Laddering; Belief elicitation; MAPP; Means-end theory