Mike Brock is Associate Professor in Behavioural Economics in the Department of Economics at UEA. He explores how (and why) people behave in a more sustainable or environmental way. Particular projects include financial incentives to encourage recycling through lottery techniques and the use of competitive rankings on personal use of energy to stimulate energy reduction.
Mike has also explored people’s behaviours towards wildlife – for example why people flock to see newly-identified species of birds and the environmental of that behaviour.
Areas of Expertise (5)
Human Behaviour Towards Wildlife
University of East Anglia: Ph.D. 2015
University of East Anglia: M.Sc., Economics 2011
University of East Anglia: B.Sc., Economics 2010
Media Appearances (1)
Counting the cost of the snow – businesses face a £15m hit from Beast from the East
Eastern Daily Press online
Dr Brock said in countries where they were used to heavy snow there was infrastructure in place which meant productivity did not drop, whereas in the UK there was a much larger impact. “One thing that has the biggest impact on productivity is uncertainty,” he said.
Birds of a feather lockdown together: Mutual bird-human benefits during a global pandemicEcological Economics
2021 Feeding backyard wildlife has impure public good characteristics - it provides satisfaction to humans, both private and public, while also improving bird populations. We document a surge in human interest in connecting with wild birds during lockdowns in response to the Covid-19 pandemic. Using an event-study design, we find large increases in bird engagement began soon after the start of the COVID-19 lockdowns in Spring 2020.
An economic analysis of twitching behaviour and species rarityJournal of Environmental Economics & Policy
2020 Avid birdwatchers, or ‘twitchers’, expend a considerable amount of money and time pursuing viewing experiences of rare or vagrant species. By vagrant species, we mean a species found outside its normal range/distribution. To enhance our understanding of this form of behaviour, we present results from a U.K. survey of twitchers.
Response to Ofwat consultation on driving transformational innovation in the sectorCentre for Competition Policy
2019 A major difference between water and other utility sectors is that the appointed water companies in England and Wales are regional monopolies and household water consumers cannot change their water suppliers. As a result, the inherent incentive for companies to innovate and compete over customers is absent in the sector.
Natural Capital Accounting for Water ResourcesThe Oxford Handbook of Food, Water and Society
2018 Finding appropriate mechanisms by which to value the environment and incorporate it into economics remains a sizeable challenge for researchers in the field. Attributes of natural resources feasibly align with an economist’s notion of ‘capital’. But once nature is defined as capital, there is a crucial distinction between stocks and flows, and as a result there are both opportunities and difficulties of incorporating them within the national accounts.
The Warden Attitude: An Investigation of the Value of Interaction with Everyday WildlifeEnvironmental and Resource Economics
2017 Using a discrete choice experiment, we elicit valuations of engagement with ‘everyday wildlife’ through feeding garden birds. We find that bird-feeding is primarily but not exclusively motivated by the direct consumption value of interaction with wildlife. The implicit valuations given to different species suggest that people prefer birds that have aesthetic appeal and that evoke human feelings of protectiveness.