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COVID-19 information seeking behavior versus value perception among U.S. ethnic/racial minorities: differences and vaccination implications

Hyehyun Kim (Department of Advertising, University of Florida, Gainesville, Florida, USA)
Sylvia Chan-Olmsted (Department of Media Production, Management, and Technology, University of Florida, Gainesville, Florida, USA)
Huan Chen (Department of Advertising, University of Florida, Gainesville, Florida, USA)

Information Technology & People

ISSN: 0959-3845

Article publication date: 9 December 2022

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Abstract

Purpose

This study explores information behavior and perception and vaccination among America's three largest ethnic minorities, Hispanic, Black/African American and Asian, in COVID-19 context. Information behavior and perception are investigated from cultural and demographic characteristics, while vaccination is explored from COVID-19 related information behavior and utility/value of COVID-19 vaccine information.

Design/methodology/approach

Using Qualtrics survey panel, a national survey of America's Hispanic, Black/African American and Asian population was conducted to better understand the impact of cultural and demographic factors on COVID-19 related information. Data were collected in Fall 2021. Multiple and logistic regression were conducted to analyze data.

Findings

Results show that cultural factors (i.e. cultural identity, social identity, social capital and religiousness) exert significant impact on information value and seeking across all three minority groups, while some demographic factors, Republicanism and age, also significantly predict COVID-19 related information seeking and value for Black/African Americans and Hispanics, but less for Asian Americans. Lastly, information value was found to significantly predict vaccine status, willingness and eagerness, the three facets of vaccination as conceptualized in this study, for top three racial/ethic minorities.

Originality/value

The finding of this study reveal that there are variations in terms of the level and type of attachment to one's culture/social group in COVID-19 informational context. Between the three groups, granular differences were observed regarding the relationship between cultural factors and perceived COVID-19 information value. While cultural identity is most associated with African Americans, social capital is most evident for the Asian Americans, but social identity was the strongest predictor among Hispanics. Thus, this study offers important strategic insights into a unique population sample to better understand the impact of COVID-19 related information perception and vaccination implication.

Keywords

Citation

Kim, H., Chan-Olmsted, S. and Chen, H. (2022), "COVID-19 information seeking behavior versus value perception among U.S. ethnic/racial minorities: differences and vaccination implications", Information Technology & People, Vol. ahead-of-print No. ahead-of-print. https://doi.org/10.1108/ITP-02-2022-0107

Publisher

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Emerald Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2022, Emerald Publishing Limited

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