National identity predicts public health support during a global pandemic

Jay Joseph Van Bavel, Aleksandra Cichocka, Valerio Capraro, Hallgeir Sjåstad, John B. Nezlek, Mark Alfano, Flavio Azevedo, Aleksandra Cislak, Patricia Lockwood, Robert M Ross, Elena Agadullina, Matthew A J Apps, JAMIR BENZON R. ARUTA JOHN, Alexander Bor, Charles Crabtree, William A. Cunningham, Koustav De, Christian T. Elbaek, Waqas Ejaz, Andrej FindorBiljana Gjoneska, Yusaku Horiuchi, Toan Luu Duc Huynh, Agustin Ibanez, Jacob Israelashvili, Katarzyna Jasko, Jaroslaw Kantorowicz, Elena Kantorowicz-Reznichenko, André Krouwel, Michael Laakasuo, Claus Lamm, Caroline Leygue, Mohammad Sabbir Mansoor, Lewend Mayiwar, Honorata Mazepus, Cillian McHugh, Panagiotis Mitkidis, Andreas Olsson, Tobias Otterbring, Anat Perry, Dominic Packer, Michael Bang Petersen, Arathy Puthillam, Tobias Rothmund, TEWARI SHRUTI, Manos Tsakiris, Hans Tung, Meltem Yucel, Edmunds Vanags, Madalina Vlasceanu, Benedict Guzman Antazo, Sergio Barbosa, Brock Bastian, Ennio Bilancini, Natalia Bogatyreva, Leonardo Boncinelli, Jonathan E. Booth, Sylvie Borau, Ondrej Buchel, Chrissie Ferreira Carvalho, Chiara Cerami, Chiara Crespi, Jo Cutler, Sylvain Delouvée, Guillaume Dezecache, Uwe Dulleck, Tom W. Etienne, Fahima Farkhari, Jonathan Albert Fugelsang, Theofilos Gkinopoulos, Kurt Gray, Siobhán M Griffin, Bjarki Gronfeldt, June Gruber, Matej Hruška, Ozan Isler, Simon Jangard, Frederik Juhl Jørgensen, Lina Koppel, Josh Leota, Eva Lermer, Neil L Levy, Asako Miura, Rafał Muda, Annalisa Myer, Kyle Nash, Jonas P. Nitschke, Yohsuke Ohtsubo, Victoria Oldemburgo de Mello, Yafeng Pan, Papp Zsófia, Philip Pärnamets, Mariola Paruzel-Czachura, Michael Mark Pitman, Joanna Pyrkosz-Pacyna, Steve Rathje, Kasey Rhee, Gabriel Gaudencio do Rêgo, Claire Robertson, Octavio Salvador-Ginez, Waldir M. Sampaio, David Alan Savage, Julian Andrew Scheffer, Philipp Schönegger, Ahmed Skali, Brent Strickland, Anna Stefaniak, Anni Sternisko, Gustav Tinghög, Benno Torgler, Raffaele Tucciarelli, Nick D'Angelo Ungson, Mete Sefa Uysal, Jan-Willem van Prooijen, Daniel Västfjäll, Joana Vieira, Alexander C. Walker, Erik Wetter, Robin Richard Willardt, Adrian Dominik Wojcik, Kaidi Wu, Yuki Yamada, Onurcan Yilmaz, Kumar Yogeeswaran, Rolf Antonius Zwaan, Paulo Boggio, Daryl Cameron

Research output: Working paper/PreprintPreprint

Abstract

Changing collective behaviour and supporting non-pharmaceutical interventions is an important component in mitigating virus transmission during a pandemic. In a large international collaboration (Study 1, N = 49,968 across 67 countries), we investigated self-reported factors that associated with people reported adopting public health behaviours (e.g., spatial distancing and stricter hygiene) and endorsed public policy interventions (e.g., closing bars and restaurants) during the early stage of the pandemic (April-May 2020). Respondents who reported identifying more strongly with their nation consistently reported greater engagement in public health behaviours and support for public health policies. Results were similar for representative and non-representative national samples. Study 2 (N = 42 countries) conceptually replicated the central finding using aggregate indices of national identity (obtained using the World Values Survey) and a measure of actual behaviour change during the pandemic (obtained from Google mobility reports). Higher levels of national identification prior to the pandemic predicted lower mobility during the early stage of the pandemic (r = -.40). We discuss the potential implications of links between national identity, leadership, and public health for managing COVID-19 and future pandemics.
Original languageEnglish
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 2 Sep 2020

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