Center for Studies in Demography and Ecology

Ann Bostrom and Nicole Errett Co-Author Opinion Piece on Coronavirus Perceptions for The Guardian

Posted: 2/29/2020 (CSDE in the News)

COVID-19 appears to be more contagious than the flu, but big uncertainties about it remain. Early misinformation and diagnostic testing deficits may have protracted these uncertainties. Therefore, policy makers and publics are vulnerable to misperceptions of and faulty solutions to the outbreak. This is why CSDE Affiliates Ann Bostrom and Nicole Errett co-authored an opinion piece for The Guardian on COVID-19 perceptions and their consequences. In their piece, Bostrom and Errett explain how the uncertainties can amplify misperceptions—people may accept established policies and familiar remedies for illusory certainty, unwittingly helping the virus spread. Thus, the authors emphasize that “clear messaging from trusted sources, and guidance on what to do and how to do it, is essential during a pandemic.”

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