LISS Grant 2021 awarded to nine researchers

The results of the LISS Call 2021 are in. Proposals from nine researchers who work at ODISSEI member organisations were awarded the grant. Via the grant, the researchers will get access to free panel time. The LISS panel, managed by Centerdata, gives researchers access to survey data from about 7,000 respondents from approximately 4,500 households.

Awarded projects:

A more realistic view on vaccination decisions – Mitchell Matthijssen (Tilburg University), Florian van Leeuwen (Tilburg University), Peter Achterberg (Tilburg University) Experts claim that vaccination is the most effective tool to combat infectious diseases, like COVID-19. Vaccination not only protects the vaccinated person; it also indirectly protects unvaccinated people if enough people are vaccinated. However, do people consider this or do they vaccinate themselves only out of self-interest? Recent research has shown that pro-social motivations (e.g., wanting to help and care for others) play an important role in vaccination decisions. The implication is that pro-social traits should be taken into account when trying to increase people’s willingness to get vaccinated. However, there are reasons to doubt whether people vaccinate themselves for the benefit of others. With this project, we want to test whether pro-social personality traits indeed influence vaccination decisions, by focusing on real-life vaccination and hypothetical vaccination decisions. Furthermore, we will also examine to what extent these relationships are influenced by perceived vulnerability and tendencies to provide socially desirable answers.

Assessing Mobile Instant Messenger Networks with Donated Data – Rense Corten (Utrecht University), Laura Boeschoten (Utrecht University) Although Mobile Instant Messenger Services play an increasingly important role in social and political participation of citizens and the spreading of information, we know surprisingly little about these networks. Most research on social media focuses on “traditional” social media platforms such as Twitter and Facebook, because in contrast to MIMSs, data from these platforms are relatively accessible to research. In this project we rely on the innovative method of data donation to collect information on the Whatsapp network in the Netherlands, by asking LISS respondents to donate own user data in a way that is both user-friendly and respecting their privacy. The result will be one of the first datasets on Whatsapp usage on a broad and high-quality sample, promising novel insights on questions about mobilization, participation and (mis)information.

Common Ground or Battleground?’, Public Perceptions of Bias in Impartial Institutions – Erika van Elsas (Radboud University Nijmegen), Maurits Meijers (Radboud University Nijmegen), Take Sipma (Tilburg University) The legitimacy of impartial institutions, such as the judicial system, law enforcement, and educational institutions, is pivotal to the proper functioning of democratic society. Yet, in public debate such supposedly impartial, a-political institutions are portrayed as politically biased: ‘the tax service is racist’ and ‘universities practice left-wing indoctrination’. In other words, these institutions are perceived as favoring the interests of specific groups over others. Much political science research has been done on support for representative political institutions, but less is known about how citizens evaluate the partiality of supposedly impartial institutions, and how this affects institutional trust. This project develops new survey items to study the nature, origins, and consequences of perceived bias in impartial institutions. Understanding the extent to which and why citizens perceive supposedly impartial institutions as biased is crucial to identify ways to mitigate public distrust.

Defining the informed consent needs of patients in radiological healthcare in a video vignette experiment – Marieke Haan (University of Groningen), Yfke Ongena (University of Groningen), Thomas Kwee (University Medical Centre Groningen) At present there is a lack of evidence when and how informed consent should be performed in radiological healthcare. This problem plays a role in 1)interventional radiology, 2)diagnostic radiology, and 3)retrospective radiology research. So far, the issue of informed consent has only been discussed from the viewpoint of healthcare professionals, whereas the voice of the population has been completely ignored. Gaining knowledge of the population’s view about when and how informed consent should be performed in the above-mentioned settings, will enable the development of clinical guidelines, legal frameworks, standardize radiological procedures, and improve patient care. In this project we aim to map the general populations’ view on the need and contents of informed consent procedures in radiological healthcare. We will do so by implementing an experimental study in which we compare written vignettes to video vignettes allowing participants to more conveniently process the complex information relevant to informed consent.

Feeling invisible: Uncovering the most robust predictors of perceived ostracism – Dongning Ren (Tilburg University), Wen Wei Loh (Ghent University) Ostracism—being ignored and excluded—is a ubiquitous yet extremely painful experience. While the negative consequences of ostracism are widely acknowledged, the root causes of ostracism are poorly understood. Past studies dispersed across several areas within social and health sciences have identified several disparate variables that purportedly shape people’s subjective feelings of ostracism, such as having a certain personality trait (e.g., disagreeable), or being a member of a minority group (e.g., women in the workplace). The current project aims to uncover what predicts ostracism best, by taking an innovative and systematic approach to quantify directly and comprehensively contrast the predictive power of these variables. This project will guide policymakers, organizational leaders, and school officials, in determining how best to build an inclusive and resilient society.

Greener than others?’, Misperceptions about relative pro-environmental engagement and their impact on climate action – Vincenz Frey (University of Groningen), Thijs Bouman (University of Groningen), Fleur Goedkoop (University of Groningen) Individuals’ behaviors are causing environmental problems and behavioral change is needed to mitigate these problems. Recent research suggests that the majority of people have a biased perception of their pro-environmental engagement, namely they see themselves as “greener” than others. It has been speculated that this bias inhibits people from taking further pro-environmental actions. Yet, research on this bias and its consequences is scarce and has limitations in terms of data and methods used. Using the representative LISS panel, this project investigates whether people really report and believe that they are greener than others and whether such (mis)perceptions differ across groups. This project also examines whether correcting potential misperceptions about others can promote pro-environmental action. The project shall provide insights that help designing effective policy interventions for society-wide pro-environmental action.

Knowing it, is loving it?’, How information provision on the EU influences EU attitudes – Elske van den Hoogen (Erasmus University Rotterdam), Willem de Koster (Erasmus University Rotterdam), Jeroen van der Waal (Erasmus University Rotterdam) Euroscepticism features prominently in societal and scholarly debates. Following the adage to know it is to love it, educating the citizenry about the European Union (EU) is often assumed to dampen such negative EU attitudes. As the EU is vast and complex and people are generally ill-informed about it, the so-called information deficit model indeed seems promising. Yet, it has not been thoroughly scrutinised whether reducing citizens’ information deficit leads to more positive EU attitudes. We propose to analyse data from a randomised survey-experiment linked to previously collected LISS data (including pre-measures) to rigorously assess the causal impact of information provision on EU attitudes, and how this is shaped by both prior EU knowledge and populist attitudes. Our experimental treatment is a professionally produced short video providing easily understandable information on the principle of subsidiarity; a crucial case as recent research links Euroscepticism to concerns about national sovereignty.

Preferences for income redistribution – Jochem de Bresser (Tilburg University), Marike Knoef (Leiden University) In democracies the views of the voting population ultimately determine important policies, such as income redistribution. Recent trends in income inequality, migration and inter-generational mobility motivate a new wave of attention for preferences for income distributions and redistribution. The research in this proposal presents an innovative next step in our understanding of both the measurement and drivers of these important preferences, which are especially relevant when governments rebalance budgets in the wake of COVID-19 stimulus packages. The contribution lies in the combination of novel approaches to measurement that exploit the possibilities of large, online panels and randomized survey experiments that allow estimation of the causal impact of different types of information on preferences for distributions and redistribution. In terms of measurement, our survey items use interactive graphs and tables to help respondents make meaningful choices and construct their ideal income distribution. Randomized provision of different types of information enables us to estimate the causal effect of one’s own income, the COVID pandemic and the ubiquity of part-time work on preferences.

Validly measuring political trust – Kjell Noordzij (Erasmus University Rotterdam), Willem de Koster (Erasmus University Rotterdam), Jeroen van der Waal (Erasmus University Rotterdam) The societally highly salient issue of political trust is studied intensively in political science. However, widely used measures of political trust do not reflect its multidimensional nature. We propose to develop and empirically validate a novel measure of political trust incorporating its four key dimensions – competence, care, accountability, and reliability. We do so for three distinct institutions and actors in order to explore the breadth of its relevance. Using our novel measure, we analyze whether the often-used single-item measure of political trust validly captures political trust, and, if not, provide and empirically validate a theoretically grounded alternative measure. The high-quality LISS panel enables us to do so among a representative sample of the Dutch population. Next to substantial impact on a flourishing field of research, our results promise to be relevant to policymakers and advisory bodies involved with assessing political trust among citizens.

The reviewers of the LISS Call 2021 were:

Mara Yerkes (Utrecht University)
Verena Seibel (Utrecht University)
Heleen Janssen (Max Planck Institute)
Jim Been (Leiden University)
Lotte Van Dillen (Leiden University)

The LISS Call 2021 attracted 27 applications. The number of applications shows substantial interest in using the LISS panel for data collection.

The next LISS Call will likely open in the Spring of 2022.

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