Risk Perception, Self-Efficacy, Trust in Government, and the Moderating Role of Perceived Social Media Content During the COVID-19 Pandemic

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The public’s actions will likely have a significant effect on the course of the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. Human behavior is conditioned and shaped by information and people’s perceptions. This study investigated the impact of risk perception on trust in government and self-efficacy. It examined whether the use of social media helped people adopt preventive actions during the pandemic. To test this hypothesis, the researchers gathered data from 512 individuals (students and academics) based in Malaysia during the COVID-19 pandemic. Our results suggested that risk perception had a significant effect on trust in government and self-efficacy. Moreover, these correlations were stronger when social media was used as a source for gathering information on COVID-19. In some cases, it even helped users avoid exposure to the virus. This study assessed the relationship between risk perception and the awareness gained from using social media during the pandemic and highlighted how social media usage influences trust in government and self-efficacy.
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Archival date: 2021-06-07
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