Realistic Expectations and Prosocial Behavioural Intentions to the Early Phase of the COVID-19 Pandemic in the Norwegian Population
Journal article, Peer reviewed
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Original versionCollabra: Psychology. 2021, 7(1), 18698. 10.1525/collabra.18698
The coronavirus pandemic represents a serious challenge for modern societies. Individuals’ perception of risk influences their choice of action, and their collective actions determine the societal impact of the pandemic. The current data paper presents descriptive statistics of a survey from a representative sample of Norwegian citizens (N = 4,083), collected in the early phases of the pandemic (March 20-29, 2020). Most of the population considered the risk for being infected to be small and the risk for becoming seriously ill to be smaller still. On the other hand, most were worried that family members could be infected, and that their daily life could change drastically. The majority of participants were optimistic that they could handle the challenges that the virus would bring, and that they would receive good medical treatment if they were to become sick. Almost all stated that they intended to comply with the authorities’ advice for limiting the contagion. Most stated that following the advice would be effective in preventing themselves and others from becoming sick. Most stated being careful in how they gather information about the pandemic. The survey showed that the Norwegian population at the time had realistic perceptions of risks, optimistic attitudes and intentions for prosocial behaviour that would limit the pandemic spread.