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Protection Motivation and Risk Communication
Risk Analysis
  • Kurt Neuwirth, University of Cincinnati
  • Sharon Dunwoody, University of Wisconsin - Madison
  • Robert J. Griffin, Ph.D., Marquette University
Document Type
Format of Original
14 p.
Publication Date
Original Item ID
doi: 10.1111/0272-4332.205065
The purpose of this study was to explore the utility of protection motivation theory (PMT) in the context of mass media reports about a hazard. Content elements of a hazard's severity, likelihood of occurring, and the effectiveness of preventive actions were systematically varied in a news story about a fabricated risk: exposure to fluorescent lighting lowering academic performance. Results of this experiment (N = 206) suggest that providing information about the severity of a hazard's consequences produces greater information seeking. In addition, information about levels of risk, severity, and efficacy combined jointly to produce greater rates of willingness to take actions designed to avoid the hazard. Results are seen as providing general support for PMT and are discussed within the broader framework of information seeking and heuristic and systematic information processing.

Risk Analysis, Vol. 20, No. 5 (October 2000): 721-734. DOI.

Citation Information
Kurt Neuwirth, Sharon Dunwoody and Robert J. Griffin. "Protection Motivation and Risk Communication" Risk Analysis (2000) ISSN: 0272-4332
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