The interplay between governmental communications and fellow citizens’ reactions via twitter: Experimental results of a theoretical crisis in the Netherlands

Marije H Bakker*, Marco van Bommel, José H Kerstholt, Ellen Giebels

*Corresponding author for this work

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

    Abstract

    This study aimed to gain insight into the interplay between citizens’ reactions on Twitter and governmental communications as well as their effects on self‐reliant behaviour and trust. Two experimental studies were conducted. In Study 1, participants first received other citizens’ reactions followed by the government's communications about how to act. Participants received supporting, opposing, mixed, or no reactions from other citizens. In Study 2, participants first received the government's communications with either certain or uncertain crisis information, followed by the different citizens’ reactions. The results showed that citizens’ reactions via Twitter are not necessarily detrimental to the effectiveness of governmental communications regarding self‐reliant behaviour. In addition, our findings suggest being careful with providing uncertain governmental communications during a crisis.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)265-271
    Number of pages7
    JournalJournal of Contingencies and Crisis Management
    Volume27
    Issue number3
    Early online date22 Nov 2018
    DOIs
    Publication statusPublished - Sep 2019

    Keywords

    • citizens
    • crisis
    • crisis communication
    • self-reliant behaviour
    • twitter
    • SOCIAL MEDIA USE
    • RISK
    • INFORMATION
    • BELIEFS
    • SCIENCE
    • EXPERT
    • IMPACT
    • PEER

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