Fundamental Beliefs, Origin Explanations and Perceived Effectiveness of Protection Measures: Exploring Laypersons' Chains of Reasoning About Influenza
Article first published online: 4 NOV 2013
Copyright © 2013 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.
Journal of Community & Applied Social Psychology
Volume 24, Issue 5, pages 359–375, September/October 2014
How to Cite
2014), Fundamental Beliefs, Origin Explanations and Perceived Effectiveness of Protection Measures: Exploring Laypersons' Chains of Reasoning About Influenza, J. Community Appl. Soc. Psychol., 24, pages 359–375. doi: 10.1002/casp.2170, , , , and (
- Issue published online: 2 SEP 2014
- Article first published online: 4 NOV 2013
- Manuscript Accepted: 9 OCT 2013
- Manuscript Revised: 7 OCT 2013
- Manuscript Received: 11 APR 2013
- social representations;
- protection measures;
- chains of reasoning
Laypersons' chains of reasoning in explaining recent influenza outbreaks are investigated. Drawing on social representations theory, fundamental worldviews, that is, the belief in a dangerous world (BDW), are postulated to anchor explanations of disease origins, which in turn affect perceived effectiveness of protection measures. Our study, based on a longitudinal survey among the general public in Switzerland, showed that the lower people's BDW scores, the more they appeal to natural origins to explain outbreaks and the more they perceive official protection measures as effective. The higher people's BDW scores, the more they explain outbreaks via hygienic origins, which are linked with out-group discrimination measures, and conspiracy origins, which are linked with lower perceived effectiveness of aid intervention measures. Copyright © 2013 John Wiley & Sons, Ltd.