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Social media's role in propagation of myths and facts regarding the Corona Virus – A cross-cultural explanatory study

2020-04-06

Ewa Lazarczyk Carlson, an affiliated researcher at IFN, together with scientists from 12 other universities, participates in a research study focusing on peoples´ attitudes and behaviours towards COVID-19 and the use of social media channels in acquisition of information regarding the virus.

Media is flooded with information regarding the virus, both from credible sources and of unverified origin. Massive amount of information of various quality has impact on the social good, thus it is crucial to study knowledge diffusion in times of crisis, Ewa Lazarczyk Carlson explains.

–The current pandemic is a global challenge, moreover due to social media people are exposed to large amount of information coming from various sources, we want to see which sources of information are considered as credible in different countries, says Ewa Lazarczyk Carlson.

The study consists of an anonymous online survey available already in more than 26 languages – Swedish included, and anyone who is 18 or above can participate.

The survey contains a battery of questions. Respondents are asked about their general knowledge about COVID-19, measures regarding prevention of the spread of the virus, opinions about myths and facts, and the estimation of the impact the virus will have on society. Additionally, the survey contains questions relating to working from home, division of responsibilities regarding child care in countries where schools and kindergartens are closed. The questionnaire also investigates attitudes towards volunteering in times of the pandemic.So far, more than 8000 people answered.

The idea for this research has originated within Wrocław University of Science and Technology (Poland) and quickly an international research group has been established which includes: Federal University of Juiz de Fora (Brazil), Chengdu University of Information Technology (China), Aarhus University (Denmark), University of Applied Sciences Zittau / Görlitz (Germany), Reykjavik University (Iceland),  Muhammadiyah University of Malang (Indonesia), Setúbal Polytechnic Institute (Portugal), Kaliningrad State Technical University (Russia) and Nuh Naci Yazgan University (Turkey).

 

Link to the survey

Research Institute of Industrial Economics, Grevgatan 34 - 2 fl, Box 55665, SE-102 15 Stockholm, Sweden | Phone: +46-(0)8-665 45 00 | info@ifn.se