Exploring the beliefs underpinning drivers' intentions to comply with speed limits

Mark A. Elliott, Christopher J. Armitage, Christopher J. Baughan

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89 Citations (Scopus)


Using the theory of planned behaviour (TPB; [Ajzen, I. (1985). From intentions to actions: A theory of planned behavior. In J. Kuhl, J. Beckmann (Eds.), Action control: From cognition to behavior (pp. 11-39). Berlin: Springer-Verlag.]) as a theoretical framework, the present study was designed to: (a) identify the beliefs underpinning drivers' intentions to comply with speed limits, and (b) test the expectancy-value theory held to underpin those beliefs. A sample of drivers (N = 598) completed questionnaires designed to measure TPB variables with respect to compliance with speed limits. The results of hierarchical multiple regression analyses provided support for the expectancy-value theory held to underpin each behavioural beliefs (outcome beliefs X outcome evaluations), normative beliefs (referent beliefs X motivation to comply), and control beliefs (control frequency beliefs X control power beliefs). Belief targets for road safety countermeasures that aim persuade drivers to comply with speed limits were also identified by selecting those beliefs that were the statistically significant predictors of direct TPB measures (attitudes, subjective norm, perceived control) and intention. Theoretical and practical implications of the results are discussed.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)459-79
Number of pages380
JournalTransportation Research Part F: Traffic Psychology and Behaviour
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - 19 Sep 2005



  • theory of planned behaviour
  • expectancy-value theory
  • compliance with speed limits
  • road safety interventions

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