Adherence to COVID-19 Policy Measures: Behavioral Insights from the Netherlands and Belgium

41 Pages Posted: 15 Sep 2020

See all articles by Eline van den Broek-Altenburg

Eline van den Broek-Altenburg

University of Vermont Larner College of Medicine - Department of Radiology

Adam Atherly

Center for Health Services Research, Larner College of Medicine, University of Vermont

Date Written: September 14, 2020

Abstract

Since the start of the global COVID-19 pandemic, countries have been mirroring each other’s policies to mitigate the spread of the virus. In the widespread debate about which policy measures are most effective, the question arises if these policies alone will establish the desired behaviors of social distancing, washing hands, and wearing a face mask. We show that recommendations do not guarantee adherence, but more stringent measures do not either. Our analysis, comparing data from The Netherlands and the Dutch-speaking part of Belgium, shows that motivations, beliefs about the virus and the effectiveness of measures, and pre-pandemic behavior play an important role. This suggests that policymakers should reconsider one-size-fits-all solutions and include behavioral motivations specific to their country in their COVID-19 strategies.

Keywords: COVID-19; policy response; cross-country context; behavioral change; self-protecting behaviors; beliefs

Suggested Citation

van den Broek-Altenburg, Eline and Atherly, Adam, Adherence to COVID-19 Policy Measures: Behavioral Insights from the Netherlands and Belgium (September 14, 2020). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3692644 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.3692644

Eline Van den Broek-Altenburg (Contact Author)

University of Vermont Larner College of Medicine - Department of Radiology ( email )

89 Beaumont avenue
Burlington, VT Vermont 05405
United States

Adam Atherly

Center for Health Services Research, Larner College of Medicine, University of Vermont ( email )

89 Beaumont Avenue
Burlington, VT 05405-0158
United States

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