Drawing on emotional intensity theory (Brehm, 1999), we experimentally tested (N=282) whether being aware that a certain number of deaths caused by Covid-19 in Italy was avoidable can deter people’s tendency to justify the choices of the Italian government. Specifically, we expected people to justify the Italian government according to a cubic function of increasing numbers of avoidable deaths caused by Covid-19. As predicted, the justification of the government was strong when the number of avoidable deaths was unknown; paradoxically reduced when the number of avoidable deaths was low (5%); and increased again when it was moderate (35%). Unexpectedly, participants’ justification of the government did not decrease when the number of avoidable deaths was augmented to 70% of the total. Our results, however, do not contradict the theory’s predictions but guide future studies in the testing of this specific hypothesis. Practical implications of the proposed process will be also discussed.

How increasing numbers of avoidable deaths caused by Covid-19 in Italy affect people’s motivation to justify the Italian Government / Contu, Federico; Sciara, Simona; Pantaleo, Giuseppe. - (2021). ((Intervento presentato al convegno 13th General Meeting of the Society of the Science of Motivation (SSM) tenutosi a Virtually Hosted.

How increasing numbers of avoidable deaths caused by Covid-19 in Italy affect people’s motivation to justify the Italian Government.

Federico Contu;
2021

Abstract

Drawing on emotional intensity theory (Brehm, 1999), we experimentally tested (N=282) whether being aware that a certain number of deaths caused by Covid-19 in Italy was avoidable can deter people’s tendency to justify the choices of the Italian government. Specifically, we expected people to justify the Italian government according to a cubic function of increasing numbers of avoidable deaths caused by Covid-19. As predicted, the justification of the government was strong when the number of avoidable deaths was unknown; paradoxically reduced when the number of avoidable deaths was low (5%); and increased again when it was moderate (35%). Unexpectedly, participants’ justification of the government did not decrease when the number of avoidable deaths was augmented to 70% of the total. Our results, however, do not contradict the theory’s predictions but guide future studies in the testing of this specific hypothesis. Practical implications of the proposed process will be also discussed.
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Utilizza questo identificativo per citare o creare un link a questo documento: https://hdl.handle.net/11573/1583046
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