(), Pol Campos-Mercade
(), Armando N. Meier
() and Erik Wengström
Ola Andersson: Department of Economics, Uppsala University
Pol Campos-Mercade: Department of Economics, University of Copenhagen
Armando N. Meier: University of Lausanne
Erik Wengström: Department of Economics, Lund University, Postal: Department of Economics, School of Economics and Management, Lund University, Box 7082, S-220 07 Lund, Sweden
Abstract: We show that the anticipation of COVID-19 vaccines reduces voluntary social distancing. In a large-scale preregistered survey experiment with a representative sample, we study whether providing information about the safety, effectiveness, and availability of COVID-19 vaccines affects compliance with public health guidelines. We find that vaccine information reduces peoples' voluntary social distancing, adherence to hygiene guidelines, and their willingness to stay at home. Vaccine information induces people to believe in a swifter return to normal life and puts their vigilance at ease. The results indicate an important behavioral drawback of the successful vaccine development: An increased focus on vaccines can lead to bad health behaviors and accelerate the spread of the virus. The results imply that, as vaccinations start and the end of the pandemic feels closer, existing policies aimed at increasing social distancing will be less effective and stricter policies might be required.
22 pages, December 30, 2020
Full text files
wp20_29.pdf Full text
wp20_29_appendix.pdf Online appendix
Questions (including download problems) about the papers in this series should be directed to David Edgerton ()
Report other problems with accessing this service to Sune Karlsson ().
This page generated on 2021-01-14 11:58:43.