Human Behaviour in Pandemics
Social and Psychological Determinants in a Global Health Crisis
This timely interdisciplinary book brings together a wide spectrum of theoretical concepts and their empirical applications in relation to the COVID-19 pandemic, informing our understanding of the social and psychological bases of a global crisis.
Written by an author team of psychologists and sociologists, the volume provides comprehensive coverage of phenomena such as fear, risk, judgement and decision making, threat and uncertainty, group identity and cohesion, social and institutional trust, and communication in the context of an international health emergency.The topics have been grouped into four main chapters, focusing on the individual, group, social, and communication perspectives of the issues affecting or being affected by the pandemic, based on over 740 classic and current references of peer-reviewed research and contextualized with an epidemiological perspective discussed in the introduction. The volume finishes with two special sections, with a chapter on cultural specificity of the social impact of pandemics, focusing specifically on both Islam and Hinduism, and a chapter on the cross-national differences in policy responses to the current health crisis.
Providing not just a reference for academic research, but also short-term and long-term policy solutions based on successful strategies to combat adverse social, cognitive, and emotional consequences, this is the ideal resource for academics and policymakers interested in social and psychological determinants of individual reactions to pandemics, as well as in fields such as economics, management, politics, and medical care.
Table of Contents
PART 1: INDIVIDUALS, GROUPS, AND SOCIETY IN TIMES OF PANDEMICS
- INDIVIDUAL PERSPECTIVE
- GROUP PERSPECTIVE
- SOCIETAL LEVEL
- COMMUNICATION IN TIMES OF PANDEMIC
- The COVID-19 EPIDEMIC IN POLAND, AS OF SUMMER 2021
- PANDEMIC AND CULTURAL DIFFERENCES: EXAMPLES FROM ISLAM AND HINDUISM
- PUBLIC POLICY RESPONSES TO THE PANDEMIC: A COMPARATIVE PERSPECTIVE
PART 2: CULTURE AND POLICY IN TIMES OF PANDEMICS: CASE STUDIES
Małgorzata Kossowska, full professor in psychology, head of the Social Psychology Unit and Center for Social Cognitive Studies in the Institute of Psychology at Jagiellonian University.
Natalia Letki, associate professor at the Faculty of Political Science and International Studies and Centre for Excellence in Social Sciences, University of Warsaw.
Tomasz Zaleskiewicz, full professor in psychology, head of the Center for Research in Economic Behavior at SWPS University of Social Sciences and Humanities, Wroclaw, Poland.
Szymon Wichary, associate professor at the Institute of Psychology, Jagiellonian University, Krakow.
'This book is excellent collection of psychological insights into people’s perception, understanding and reactions to the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic. The scholarly analysis of individual, group and societal dynamics deals with emotions, risk perception and decision making, trust in experts and institutions, adaptation processes and the fight against restrictions to regain the lost freedom…a must-read for everybody trying to understand the crisis and a valuable source for students and researchers in the field of psychology and behavioral sciences.'
Prof. Erich Kirchler, University of Vienna, Austria
'In the course of the COVID-19 pandemic, an extraordinary number of people turned overnight into specialists in individual psychology, social psychology, and sociology. Peremptory statements about how people feel, individually and collectively, circulated widely and irresponsibly. This book represents a timely and successful effort to counter such epistemic trespassing, by laying out what is known in the relevant fields. Warmly recommended.'
Prof. David Leiser, Ben Gurion University of the Negev, Israel
'How Social Psychology contributes to facing the crisis related to the pandemic is the topic of this book. It covers individual and group perspectives, as well as society’s, with a focus on the role of institutions’ trust, and the influence of social capital in terms of compliance. The importance of cultural differences, with the examples of Islam and Hinduism, is well shown. The last chapter is particularly interesting as it describes how little scientific evidence is taken into account in public policy responses to the pandemic, and how psychology can contribute to facilitating adaptation to a prolonged pandemic. It is a must!'
Prof. Christine Roland-Lévy, President – International Association of Applied Psychology (IAAP), University of Reims Champagne Ardenne, France
'The COVID-19 pandemic has taken lives of millions worldwide and put our world into chaos. As the pandemic unfolded, it became clear that understanding and mitigating the process requires the collective work of various specialists, including virologists, medical doctors, mathematicians, but also representatives of the social sciences. The pandemic changed our behaviour and daily routines; it affected our mental health and increased the prevalence of psychiatric disorders. Interestingly, our behaviour also affects the pandemic, as the occurrence of "waves" largely reflect our habits, and to a lesser extent, the seasonality of the virus. Strikingly, social sciences, in some cases, appear to be more relevant in controlling the pandemic than medicine and biology. However, the importance of these studies is not reflected by the funding and attention they deserve. The book Human Behaviour in Pandemics addresses a lot of these issues, critically discussing the problem of the pandemic on the level of a single person, a group, and a society. It discusses communication and miscommunication and confronts us with many unobvious aspects of the pandemic. I highly recommend the book. It is one of the first positions that comprehensively address the topic. While it refers to the COVID-19 pandemic, the messages are universal. Important to read now, but also worth considering before the next crisis.'
Krzysztof Pyrć, Ph.D, D.Sc. Full professor in virology, Jagiellonian University, member of the European Group of Experts on SARS-CoV-2 Variants