Infectious Disease Risk Communication

Glen Nowak and David Daigle. Infectious Disease Risk Communication: Lessons from Ebola, Dengue, and Zika. Presentation to be given at the International Public Relations Society of America (PRSA) conference, Oct. 24, Indianapolis.

Abstract: In the past 18 months, little known infectious diseases – Ebola, Dengue fever, and Zika — have infected Americans and quickly generated much national and local media and public interest. Many government agencies, state and local health departments, and private healthcare providers have had to quickly undertake emergency risk communication, while others have had to consider how they would respond should a case arise in their state or facility. Using Ebola, Dengue, and Zika as case examples, this presentation will identify communication issues and challenges that newly emerging infectious diseases pose (particularly those not readily or obviously apparent), highlight examples and lessons learned from communication efforts, and provide a foundation for rapidly and effectively doing infectious disease crisis and risk communication.

Glen Nowak 

Related Research


Where readers look, and what they miss

Abstract: Participants (N=88) in a two-condition (Facebook post information level: high vs. low) mixed factorial design took part in a laboratory experiment that utilized eye tracking to gauge what areas of the page in common news layouts attract viewers’ gaze, and whether this viewing amount of information about the story disclosed in the Facebook posts. […]

Bartosz WojdynskiCamila EspinaKate KeibJennifer MalsonHyejin BangYen-I Lee
read more
Image and framing effects on perceptions of self-efficacy and body satisfaction

Abstract: This study, in the context of encouraging participants to enroll in a company’s employee wellness program, uses gain-loss framing (Rothman & Salovey, 1997) and social comparison theory (Festinger, 1954) to examine the effects of messages on participant perceptions of self-efficacy for maintaining a healthy weight, consuming healthful foods and body satisfaction. A 2 (framing: […]

Maria Len-RíosYen-I Lee
read more