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Improving compliance with COVID-19 guidance: a workplace field experiment

Danae Arroyos-Calvera, Michalis Drouvelis (), Johannes Lohse and Rebecca McDonald
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Rebecca McDonald: University of Birmingham

Discussion Papers from Department of Economics, University of Birmingham

Abstract: Compliance with COVID-19 measures in the workplace is a vital component of society's strategy for mitigating the effects of the pandemic. We trial well-established behavioural interventions (social norms, pledging, messenger effects) in a field setting. We use daily reports of own and other's behaviour to assess the effects of these interventions on compliance and supplement these subjective measures with objective data on hand sanitiser usage. The behavioural interventions tested have significant but quantitatively moderate effects on subjective compliance measures and minimal effects on sanitiser usage. We discuss the influence of ceiling effects caused by already high compliance levels as one limiting factor when attempting to influence behaviour in this context. Another important observation is that all effects of our interventions (where they exist) are short-term in nature and dissipate shortly after implementation. Our findings thus provide weak support for the hypothesis that interventions supported by a large body of behavioural work can help support compliance with infection prevention measures in the workplace.

Keywords: Social norms; pledge; field experiment; COVID-19 pandemic; workplace safety (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: C39 D91 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
Pages: 19 pages
Date: 2020-12
New Economics Papers: this item is included in nep-exp
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