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Article

Containing COVID-19 by Matching Messages on Social Distancing to Emergent Mindsets—The Case of North America

1
School of Nutrition, Ryerson University, Toronto, ON M5B-2K3, Canada
2
School of Behavioral Sciences and Psychology, College of Management Academic Studies, Rishon LeZion 91750, Israel
3
Department of Postharvest and Sensory Evaluation, Institute of Food Technology, Faculty of Food Sciences, Szent Istvan University, H-1118 Budapest, Hungary
4
MindCart AI, Inc., White Plains, NY 10605, USA
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(21), 8096; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph17218096
Received: 12 August 2020 / Revised: 28 October 2020 / Accepted: 30 October 2020 / Published: 3 November 2020
(This article belongs to the Special Issue The World in Crisis: Current Health Issues)
Public compliance with social distancing is key to containing COVID-19, yet there is a lack of knowledge on which communication ‘messages’ drive compliance. Respondents (224 Canadians and Americans) rated combinations of messages about compliance, systematically varied by an experimental design. Independent variables were perceived risk; the agent communicating the policy; specific social distancing practices; and methods to enforce compliance. Response patterns to each message suggest three mindset segments in each country reflecting how a person thinks. Two mindsets, the same in Canada and the US, were ‘tell me exactly what to do,’ and ‘pandemic onlookers.’ The third was ‘bow to authority’ in Canada, and ‘tell me how’ in the US. Each mindset showed different messages strongly driving compliance. To effectively use messaging about compliance, policy makers may assign any person or group in the population to the appropriate mindset segment by using a Personal Viewpoint Identifier that we developed. View Full-Text
Keywords: communication; messages; compliance; COVID-19; health policy; social distancing communication; messages; compliance; COVID-19; health policy; social distancing
MDPI and ACS Style

Bellissimo, N.; Gabay, G.; Gere, A.; Kucab, M.; Moskowitz, H. Containing COVID-19 by Matching Messages on Social Distancing to Emergent Mindsets—The Case of North America. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17, 8096. https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph17218096

AMA Style

Bellissimo N, Gabay G, Gere A, Kucab M, Moskowitz H. Containing COVID-19 by Matching Messages on Social Distancing to Emergent Mindsets—The Case of North America. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. 2020; 17(21):8096. https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph17218096

Chicago/Turabian Style

Bellissimo, Nick, Gillie Gabay, Attila Gere, Michaela Kucab, and Howard Moskowitz. 2020. "Containing COVID-19 by Matching Messages on Social Distancing to Emergent Mindsets—The Case of North America" International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health 17, no. 21: 8096. https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph17218096

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