The number of repair service providers has been on the decline in recent decades. Repairing is a vital part of maintenance, a process that involves replacing necessary equipment and building infrastructure. In addition, repairs are a central component of the circular economy.
Various studies have investigated the influence of diverse drivers on repair intention. These range from economic to environmental to social aspects. The results provide valuable insights for public authorities aiming to promote repair.
One study found that consumers are willing to pay up to 20% of the purchase price for repair services. A recent European Commission study found that consumers are able to repair up to 30% of their products. This is the result of several factors, such as the rise of repair cafes and online repair platforms.
Another study examined the impact of social factors on repair intentions. The findings suggest that individuals who are part of a repair network are more likely to use their services. Social networks also help in boosting trust in a repair service provider. However, a closer look at the data revealed that some groups were more likely to be included than others.
Other studies have found that social norms, in particular word-of-mouth communication from experts, have a larger influence on repair decisions than purely economic factors. It’s no secret that a higher degree of trust in a repair service provider can be a positive factor.
On the other hand, a study of the same size found that there was no statistically significant difference between women and men in their willingness to make the most of their repair service provider. As such, gender may not be the most important factor. Although women tend to prefer repair providers, men are more likely to do the work themselves.
Of course, there’s more to it than that. Several studies have found that economic considerations have a negative effect on repair intent. For instance, a greater choice of repair service providers could lead to a reduction in demand. Alternatively, a government intervention, such as financial support or subsidised repair services, can reduce the barriers to repairing.
Other studies have found that past behaviour and educational levels can influence repair intent. Specifically, a survey of consumer goods uncovered that the amount of money that consumers are willing to spend for repairs is a direct indicator of their desire to repair. Lastly, a study in Styria found that a specific situation in the region provided a platform for incorporating various repair intentions.
Using a sample of consumers from the Styria region, researchers examined the influence of several different drivers on repair intention. They found that repair service providers, particularly those in rural areas, have a pronounced impact on repair intentions. Consumers also showed a stronger interest in the eco-friendly functions of a repair service. While the study did not find any statistically significant differences, it did highlight the importance of the economic and environmental signals.
Despite these findings, there is still a need for more research in this field. A better understanding of the influence of different drivers on repair intent can provide public authorities with the tools they need to promote the right types of solutions.