University of Twente Student Theses


Emotional reactions to a democratic policy-decision: a Covid-19 lockdown case study

Kortink Boada, Alex (2022) Emotional reactions to a democratic policy-decision: a Covid-19 lockdown case study.

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Abstract:This thesis researched the different emotional reactions to a decision-making process, particularly the reactions to the implementation of a severe lockdown imposed by the Dutch government on the 19th of December 2021. Within the framework of Behavioural Public Administration, five different aspects related to the decision-making process - communication, political biases, institutional-political trust, egotropic and sociotropic representations - are theorised to induce emotional reactions to a young population. Using the theory of Gu et al. 2019 “Three Primary Colour Model of Basic Emotions” the research has interviewed a specific group of students seeking to identify in their self-reported thoughts and perceptions emotional states regarding the policy-making processes and implementation. During the execution of a public decision, the population’s psychological reactions play a critical role in the compliance to the policy beyond the confirmation of the personal preference, nonetheless, there is a window for social and mental wellbeing disruption that needs to be taken into consideration (Cullen et al., 2020). After performing a statistical analysis, the research found that no emotional reactions can be strongly explained when the democratic decision-making process is seen as problematic. Only individual policy preference and the sociotropic representation are able to explain emotional variance.
Item Type:Essay (Bachelor)
Faculty:BMS: Behavioural, Management and Social Sciences
Subject:77 psychology, 88 social and public administration
Programme:Management Society and Technology BSc (56654)
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