The current study provides data about the immediate risk perceptions and psychological effects of the COVID-19 pandemic among Italian participants. A sample of 980 volunteers answered a web-based survey which aimed to investigate the many facets of risk perceptions connected to COVID-19 (health, work, institutionaleconomy, interpersonal and psychological), and risk-related variables such as perceived knowledge, news seeking, perceived control, perceived efficacy of containment measures, and affective states. Socio-demographic characteristics were also collected. Results showed that although levels of general concern are relatively high among Italians, risk perceptions are highest with regards to the institutional-economy and work, and lowest concerning health. COVID-19 has been also estimated to be the least likely cause of death. Cognitive and affective risk-related variables contributed to explain the several risk perception domains differently. COVID-19 perceived knowledge did not affect any risk perception while the perceived control decreased health risk likelihood. The other risk-related variables amplified risk perceptions: News seeking increased work and institutional-economy risk; perceived efficacy of containment measures increased almost all perceived risks; negative affective states of fear, anger and sadness increased health risk; anxiety increased health, interpersonal and psychological risks, and uncertainty increased work, institutional-economy, interpersonal and psychological risk perceptions. Finally, positive affective states increased health risk perception. Socio-psychological implications are discussed.

Risk Perceptions and Psychological Effects During the Italian COVID-19 Emergency

Tiziana Lanciano
;
Antonietta Curci;
2020-01-01

Abstract

The current study provides data about the immediate risk perceptions and psychological effects of the COVID-19 pandemic among Italian participants. A sample of 980 volunteers answered a web-based survey which aimed to investigate the many facets of risk perceptions connected to COVID-19 (health, work, institutionaleconomy, interpersonal and psychological), and risk-related variables such as perceived knowledge, news seeking, perceived control, perceived efficacy of containment measures, and affective states. Socio-demographic characteristics were also collected. Results showed that although levels of general concern are relatively high among Italians, risk perceptions are highest with regards to the institutional-economy and work, and lowest concerning health. COVID-19 has been also estimated to be the least likely cause of death. Cognitive and affective risk-related variables contributed to explain the several risk perception domains differently. COVID-19 perceived knowledge did not affect any risk perception while the perceived control decreased health risk likelihood. The other risk-related variables amplified risk perceptions: News seeking increased work and institutional-economy risk; perceived efficacy of containment measures increased almost all perceived risks; negative affective states of fear, anger and sadness increased health risk; anxiety increased health, interpersonal and psychological risks, and uncertainty increased work, institutional-economy, interpersonal and psychological risk perceptions. Finally, positive affective states increased health risk perception. Socio-psychological implications are discussed.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11586/311338
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