Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item:
Title: P003/Switzerland: Effect of message framing on motivation to follow vs. defy social distancing guidelines during the COVID 19 pandemic
Other Titles: PSA COVID-19 Rapid Project 003
Authors: Legate, Nicole
Nguyen, Thuy-vy
Moller, Arlen
Legault, Lisa
Weinstein, Netta
Psychological Science Accelerator
Issue Date: Jun-2020
Abstract: To slow the transmission of COVID-19, governments around the world are asking their citizens to participate in social distancing, that is, to stay at home as much as possible. In most countries, individuals have some choice over whether or not they follow recommendations for social distancing. Thus, understanding how to best motivate social distancing has become a public health priority. This study tests, in a confirmatory manner, whether self-determination theory-guided message framing impacts people’s motivation to participate in social distancing. Specifically, we expect autonomy-supportive messages that help people understand the value of behavior change to a) increase ‘buy in’, or autonomous motivation, for social distancing, b) reduce feelings of defiance in response to those messages, and c) increase behavioral intentions to socially distance, relative to neutral and controlling messages. Further, we expect controlling messages that pressure people to change using shame, guilt, and demands, may backfire and a) decrease ‘buy in’ for social distancing, b) increase defiance, relative to the control condition, and c) reduce behavioral intentions to socially distance. We also expect ‘buy in’, or autonomous motivation, to explain why messages impact defiance and behavioral intentions. Exploratory tests will examine whether the effects of message framing on motivation, defiance, and behavioral intentions are moderated by culture, providing sufficient variability on this measure is obtained. This work has direct relevance for how public officials, health professionals, journalists, and others can communicate about solving this and future public health crises in ways that motivate people more effectively.
In view of the pandemic, the PSA has called for rapid and impactful study proposals on COVID-19. Three studies have been selected to be conducted in several countries. This is the pre-registration plan for data collection of the project PSA COVID-19 Rapid Project 003 in Switzerland.
Citation: Legate, N., Nguyen, T.-V., Moller, A., Legault, L., Weinstein, N., & Psychological Science Accelerator. (2020). P003/Switzerland: Effect of message framing on motivation to follow vs. defy social distancing guidelines during the COVID 19 pandemic. Leibniz Institut für Psychologische Information und Dokumentation (ZPID).
Appears in Collections:Preregistration

Files in This Item:
File Description SizeFormat 
PSA_CR003_prereg_Switzerland.pdf164,35 kBAdobe PDF Preview PDF Download

This item is licensed under a Creative Commons License Creative Commons