Please use this identifier to cite or link to this item: http://hdl.handle.net/10419/232695
Authors: 
Carrieri, Vincenzo
De Paola, Maria
Gioia, Francesca
Year of Publication: 
2020
Series/Report no.: 
IZA Discussion Papers No. 13943
Publisher: 
Institute of Labor Economics (IZA), Bonn
Abstract: 
How do people balance health/wealth concerns during a pandemic? And, how does the communication of this trade-off affect individual preferences? We address these questions using a field experiment involving around 2000 students enrolled in a large university in Italy. We design four treatments where the trade-off is communicated using different combinations of a positive framing that focuses on protective strategies and a negative framing which refers to potential costs. We find that positive framing on the health side induces individuals to give greater relevance to the health dimension. The effect is sizeable and highly effective among many different audiences, especially females. Importantly, this triggers a higher level of intention to adhere to social distancing and precautionary behaviors. Moreover, irrespective of the framing, we find a large heterogeneity in students' preferences over the trade-off. Economics students and students who have directly experienced the economic impact of the pandemic are found to favor wealth-centered policies.
Subjects: 
COVID-19
health
economic costs
trade-off
framing
JEL: 
D04
D83
D84
D91
H12
I10
J10
Document Type: 
Working Paper

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