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Article
Publication date: 13 August 2021

Senanu Kwasi Kutor, Emmanuel Kyeremeh, Bernard Owusu, Daniel Amoak and Temitope Oluwaseyi Ishola

This paper examines how one group of frontline health workers (nurses) amid coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic perceive the Government of Ghana (GOG)'s decision…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper examines how one group of frontline health workers (nurses) amid coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic perceive the Government of Ghana (GOG)'s decision to ease the lockdown restrictions when cases were increasing. This paper contributes to the literature on Igor Grossman's concept of wise reasoning and its applicability to COVID-19 management decision-making by political leaders.

Design/methodology/approach

The paper employed an exploratory qualitative design. The decision to adopt qualitative method is linked to the paucity of research on wise reasoning, political leadership and COVID-19. The paper draws on qualitative online survey with 42 nurses located in Accra Metropolis, Ghana.

Findings

The paper demonstrates that a confluence of research participants perceived the government's act of easing the lockdown restrictions to be in bad faith on account of (1) nonrecognition of different perspectives and viewpoints from stakeholders and interest groups; (2) rising number of cases which naturally make the decision to lift the restriction unwise; (3) concerns about the prioritization of peripheral issues over citizens' health and (4) concerns about limited and robust health facilities and their implications.

Research limitations/implications

The key claims must be assessed against the limitations of the study. First, the study is an exploratory study and, therefore, not intended for a generalization purpose. Second, the research participants are highly educated, and the responses in this study are skewed toward them.

Originality/value

The paper is novel in seeking to explore wise reasoning and political leadership during a global pandemic such as COVID-19. This exploratory study demonstrates that COVID-19, though devastating and causing havoc, presents an opportunity to test Igor Grossmann's wise reasoning framework about decision-making by political leaders. This extends the literature on wise reasoning beyond the discipline of psychology (the fact that all the authors are geographers) and Global North to Global South since the data for this study are gathered in Ghana.

Details

International Journal of Public Leadership, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2056-4929

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Article
Publication date: 11 June 2021

Christopher Gan, Dao Le Trang Anh and Quang Thi Thieu Nguyen

This study investigates the psychological impact of the COVID-19 lockdown on Vietnamese people and examines the factors affecting their psychological well-being during and…

Abstract

Purpose

This study investigates the psychological impact of the COVID-19 lockdown on Vietnamese people and examines the factors affecting their psychological well-being during and after the lockdown period.

Design/methodology/approach

Based on the survey answers of 701 Vietnamese respondents, this study explores the psychological impact associated with COVID-19 lockdown in Vietnam. Using a newly developed “mvord” package in R that controls the heterogeneity in error structure of the sample units (Hirk et al., 2020), the study runs multivariate ordinal logistic regression models to examine the determinants of the emotional outcomes.

Findings

The study discloses negative psychological states among the Vietnamese community during and after the lockdown, including boredom, anxiety, sadness, stress, anger, precautionary measures and post-traumatic stress symptoms. Demographic characteristics (male gender, young age, poor-health condition, high educational level, small family size, officers or professionals, using public transport, quarantine experience before the lockdown, non-extended lockdown period and living in rural areas) and various difficulties during lockdown (insufficient information about COVID-19, income loss, having daily-life difficulties and unhappy experiences during lockdown) are related to higher degrees of different psychological symptoms during and after lockdown in Vietnam.

Originality/value

This study identifies the importance of mitigating the detrimental effects of the COVID-19 lockdown on Vietnamese well-being and prepares the Vietnamese government better to handle the public mental issues during future lockdowns.

Details

International Journal of Social Economics, vol. 48 no. 9
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0306-8293

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Article
Publication date: 7 May 2021

Md. Salman Sohel, Babul Hossain, Md. Kausar Alam, Guoqing Shi, Rubaiyat Shabbir, Md. Khaled Sifullah and Most. Monowara Begum Mamy

This study intends to explore the impact of occupation and income on informal migrants in the face of COVID-19 induced lockdown in Bangladesh and their coping strategies…

Abstract

Purpose

This study intends to explore the impact of occupation and income on informal migrants in the face of COVID-19 induced lockdown in Bangladesh and their coping strategies to survive the pandemic situation.

Design/methodology/approach

The study adopted a qualitative research design in which four urban areas were chosen purposively from various parts of Dhaka city. The authors conducted 21 semi-structured in-depth interviews, four FGDs and eight months over participant observation for achieving study objectives. The four stages of data analysis used a thematic approach in the interpretive phenomenological analysis.

Findings

The results showed that respondents were massively affected due to loss of income and occupation in the period of induced lockdown. Besides, most people lost their earning sources entirely in this amid pandemic which bound them starvation in the mealtime along with several dynamic complications. The findings also revealed that they followed some surviving strategies such as taking loans, reducing expenses, consuming less food, selling land, jewelry, and goods, relatives and neighbor support, and government relief. Although these strategies somewhat supported them to struggle with the situation, their livelihood features became fragile immensely.

Research limitations/implications

The findings will be an important guiding principle for the policymakers, aid organizations and development practitioners to prepare development policies for vulnerable informal migrants in developing countries like Bangladesh.

Originality/value

This is the first study that explores the informal migrants’ occupation and income during COVID-19 induced lockdown in Bangladesh. This research also highlights coping strategies of the informal migrants to survive the pandemic situation.

Details

International Journal of Sociology and Social Policy, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0144-333X

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Article
Publication date: 15 May 2021

Ruchi Mittal, Wasim Ahmed, Amit Mittal and Ishan Aggarwal

Using data from Twitter, the purpose of this paper is to assess the coping behaviour and reactions of social media users in response to the initial days of the…

Abstract

Purpose

Using data from Twitter, the purpose of this paper is to assess the coping behaviour and reactions of social media users in response to the initial days of the COVID-19-related lockdown in different parts of the world.

Design/methodology/approach

This study follows the quasi-inductive approach which allows the development of pre-categories from other theories before the sampling and coding processes begin, for use in those processes. Data was extracted using relevant keywords from Twitter, and a sample was drawn from the Twitter data set to ensure the data is more manageable from a qualitative research standpoint and that meaningful interpretations can be drawn from the data analysis results. The data analysis is discussed in two parts: extraction and classification of data from Twitter using automated sentiment analysis; and qualitative data analysis of a smaller Twitter data sample.

Findings

This study found that during the lockdown the majority of users on Twitter shared positive opinions towards the lockdown. The results also found that people are keeping themselves engaged and entertained. Governments around the world have also gained support from Twitter users. This is despite the hardships being faced by citizens. The authors also found a number of users expressing negative sentiments. The results also found that several users on Twitter were fence-sitters and their opinions and emotions could swing either way depending on how the pandemic progresses and what action is taken by governments around the world.

Research limitations/implications

The authors add to the body of literature that has examined Twitter discussions around H1N1 using in-depth qualitative methods and conspiracy theories around COVID-19. In the long run, the government can help citizens develop routines that help the community adapt to a new dangerous environment – this has very effectively been shown in the context of wildfires in the context of disaster management. In the context of this research, the dominance of the positive themes within tweets is promising for policymakers and governments around the world. However, sentiments may wish to be monitored going forward as large-spikes in negative sentiment may highlight lockdown-fatigue.

Social implications

The psychology of humans during a pandemic can have a profound impact on how COVID-19 shapes up, and this shall also include how people behave with other people and with the larger environment. Lockdowns are the opposite of what societies strive to achieve, i.e. socializing.

Originality/value

This study is based on original Twitter data collected during the initial days of the COVID-19-induced lockdown. The topic of “lockdowns” and the “COVID-19” pandemic have not been studied together thus far. This study is highly topical.

Details

Information Discovery and Delivery, vol. 49 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2398-6247

Keywords

Content available
Article
Publication date: 1 March 2021

Hazem Al-Najjar, Nadia Al-Rousan, Dania Al-Najjar, Hamzeh F. Assous and Dana Al-Najjar

The COVID-19 pandemic virus has affected the largest economies around the world, especially Group 8 and Group 20. The increasing numbers of confirmed and deceased cases of…

Abstract

Purpose

The COVID-19 pandemic virus has affected the largest economies around the world, especially Group 8 and Group 20. The increasing numbers of confirmed and deceased cases of the COVID-19 pandemic worldwide are causing instability in stock indices every day. These changes resulted in the G8 suffering major losses due to the spread of the pandemic. This paper aims to study the impact of COVID-19 events using country lockdown announcement on the most important stock indices in G8 by using seven lockdown variables. To find the impact of the COVID-19 virus on G8, a correlation analysis and an artificial neural network model are adopted.

Design/methodology/approach

In this study, a Pearson correlation is used to study the strength of lockdown variables on international indices, where neural network is used to build a prediction model that can estimate the movement of stock markets independently. The neural network used two performance metrics including R2 and mean square error (MSE).

Findings

The results of stock indices prediction showed that R2 values of all G8 are between 0.979 and 0.990, where MSE values are between 54 and 604. The results showed that the COVID-19 events had a strong negative impact on stock movement, with the lowest point on the March of all G8 indices. Besides, the US lockdown and interest rate changes are the most affected by the G8 stock trading, followed by Germany, France and the UK.

Originality/value

The study has used artificial intelligent neural network to study the impact of US lockdown, decrease the interest rate in the USA and the announce of lockdown in different G8 countries.

Details

Journal of Chinese Economic and Foreign Trade Studies, vol. 14 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1754-4408

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Article
Publication date: 8 March 2021

Tunde Simeon Amosun, Chu Jianxun, Olayemi Hafeez Rufai, Sayibu Muhideen, Riffat Shahani, Zakir Shah and Jonathan Koroma

The purpose of this paper is to investigate university students’ WeChat usage during the COVID-19 pandemic lockdown in relation to the mediating role of online…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to investigate university students’ WeChat usage during the COVID-19 pandemic lockdown in relation to the mediating role of online self-disclosure on their quality of friendship and well-being. A model is proposed to explain how students’ interactions occur during the lockdown and the mediatory role which self-disclosure plays in influencing their socio-psychological markup.

Design/methodology/approach

The research model was tested empirically through a survey conducted online with 600 research participants, comprising of university students in China.

Findings

Results in structural equation modeling show that WeChat interaction significantly correlates with the quality of friendship, online self-disclosure but not significantly correlates with well-being, but an indirect relationship was found out in the mediation analysis. There is also a significant relationship between online self-disclosure, quality of friendship and well-being. Mediation analysis shows that online self-disclosure mediates the relationship between interactions on WeChat and quality of friendship; it also mediates the relationship between WeChat interaction and well-being. In all, the results achieved in this study will significantly help provide more insights in comprehending the nuances attached to some socio-psychological aspects of WeChat and how its usage affects people during the period of crisis.

Originality/value

Theoretically based investigation of WeChat usage among university students and its relationship with online self-disclosure, quality of friendship and well-being is still quite scarce, thereby underscoring the needs and significance of a theoretically based study in this regard. This study tested the credibility and validity of the proposed model in the context of the recent COVID-19 pandemic lockdown in China, which is one of the first in recent times.

Details

Global Knowledge, Memory and Communication, vol. ahead-of-print no. ahead-of-print
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2514-9342

Keywords

Content available
Article
Publication date: 4 January 2021

Wim Naudé and Martin Cameron

This paper aims to provide a country case study of South Africa’s response during the first six months following its first COVID-19 case. The focus is on the government’s…

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to provide a country case study of South Africa’s response during the first six months following its first COVID-19 case. The focus is on the government’s (mis-)management of its non-pharmaceutical interventions (NPIs) (or “lockdown”) to stem the pandemic and the organized business sector’s resistance against the lockdown.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper makes use of a literature review and provides descriptive statistics and quantitative analysis of COVID-19 and the lockdown stringency in South Africa, based on data from Google Mobility Trends, Oxford University’s Stringency Index, Johns Hopkins University’s COVID-19 tracker and Our World in Data.

Findings

This paper finds that both the government and the business sector’s responses to the COVID-19 pandemic have been problematic. These key actors have been failing to “pull together,” leaving South Africa’s citizens in-between corrupt and incompetent officials on the one hand, and lockdown skeptics on the other. This paper argues that to break through this impasse, the country should change direction by agreeing on a smart or “Goldilocks” lockdown, based on data, testing, decentralization, demographics and appropriate economic support measures, including export support. Such a Goldilocks lockdown is argued, based on available evidence from the emerging scientific literature, to be able to save lives, improve trust in government, limit economic damages and moreover improve the country’s long-term recovery prospects.

Research limitations/implications

The pandemic is an unprecedented crisis and moreover was still unfolding at the time of writing. This has two implications. First, precise data on the economic impact and certain epidemiological parameters was not (yet) available. Second, the causes of the mismanagement by the government are not clear yet, within such a short time frame. More research and better data may be able in future to allow conclusions to be drawn whether the problems that were besetting the country’s management of COVID-19 are unique or perhaps part of a more general problem across developing countries.

Practical implications

The paper provides clear practical implications for both government and organized business. The South African Government should not altogether end its lockdown measures, but follow a smart and flexible lockdown. The organized business sector should abandon its calls for ending the lockdown while the country is still among the most affected countries in the world, and no vaccine is available.

Social implications

There should be better collaboration between government, business and civil society to manage a smart lockdown. Government should re-establish lost trust because of the mismanagement of the lockdown during the first six months of the pandemic.

Originality/value

The outline of the smart lockdown that is proposed for the country combines NPIs with the promotion of exports, as a policy intervention to help aggregate demand to recover. The paper provides advice on how to resolve an impasse created by mismanagement of COVID-19, which could be valuable for decision-making during a crisis, particularly in developing countries.

Details

Transforming Government: People, Process and Policy, vol. 15 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1750-6166

Keywords

Content available
Article
Publication date: 22 October 2020

Daniel Briggs, Anthony Ellis, Anthony Lloyd and Luke Telford

The purpose of this paper is to consider the implications of both the Covid-19 pandemic and UK lockdown for the social, political and economic future of the UK. Drawing on…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to consider the implications of both the Covid-19 pandemic and UK lockdown for the social, political and economic future of the UK. Drawing on primary data obtained during the lockdown and the theoretical concepts of transcendental materialism and the “event”, the paper discusses the strength of participants' attachment to the “old normal” and their dreams of a “new normal”.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper utilises a semi-structured online survey (n = 305) with UK residents and Facebook forum debates collected during the lockdown period in the UK.

Findings

The findings in this paper suggest that while the lockdown suspended daily routines and provoked participants to reflect upon their consumption habits and the possibility of an alternative future, many of our respondents remained strongly attached to elements of pre-lockdown normality. Furthermore, the individual impetus for change was not matched by the structures and mechanisms holding up neoliberalism, as governments and commercial enterprises merely encouraged people to get back to the shops to spend.

Originality/value

The original contribution of this paper is the strength and depth of empirical data into the Covid-19 pandemic, specifically the lockdown. Additionally, the synthesis of empirical data with the novel theoretical framework of transcendental materialism presents an original and unique perspective on Covid-19.

Details

International Journal of Sociology and Social Policy, vol. 40 no. 9/10
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0144-333X

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 27 October 2020

Linda D. Hollebeek, Dale L.G. Smith, Edward Kasabov, Wafa Hammedi, Alexander Warlow and Moira K. Clark

While the customer brand engagement (CBE) research has advanced important insight, most studies to date explore CBE under regular, free-market conditions, yielding an…

Abstract

Purpose

While the customer brand engagement (CBE) research has advanced important insight, most studies to date explore CBE under regular, free-market conditions, yielding an important knowledge gap regarding its manifestation under less regular conditions, including disaster/pandemics. This study, therefore, aims to explore CBE with essential/non-essential service during COVID-19-prompted citizen lockdown.

Design/methodology/approach

Based on a review, the authors develop a framework of lockdown-based CBE with essential/non-essential service interactions, which are conceptualized by their respective capacity to meet differing needs in Maslow’s hierarchy. The authors view lockdown-based essential/non-essential service interactions to differentially impact CBE, as summarized in a set of propositions.

Findings

The framework depicts lockdown-based essential/non-essential service interactions and their respective impact on CBE. The authors propose two essential service modes (i.e. socially distant/platform-mediated interactions) and two non-essential service modes (i.e. service closure/platform-mediated interactions), which the authors hypothesize to differently affect CBE. Moreover, the authors view the associations between our lockdown-based service modes and CBE to be moderated by customers’ regulatory focus (i.e. promotion/prevention), as formalized in the propositions.

Research limitations/implications

Given the authors’ focus on lockdown-based CBE, this paper adds unique insight to the literature. It also raises ample opportunities for further study, as outlined.

Practical implications

This study yields important managerial implications, including the suggested adoption of differing tactics/strategies to leverage promotion/prevention-focused customers’ brand engagement during lockdown.

Originality/value

By exploring the effects of lockdown-based essential/non-essential service modes on promotion/prevention-focused customers’ brand engagement, this paper adds novel insight.

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Article
Publication date: 4 December 2020

Micheal M. van Wyk

This paper aims to explore student teachers’ views related to the online academic support e-tools used under the COVID-19 lockdown.

Abstract

Purpose

This paper aims to explore student teachers’ views related to the online academic support e-tools used under the COVID-19 lockdown.

Design/methodology/approach

Mapping a pragmatic research approach, an explanatory mixed methods design was used for the study.

Findings

Empirical evidence revealed that student teachers were satisfied and experienced the academic support tools as being positively applied to their online learning. Furthermore, it is reported that student teachers preferred the discussion forum as the most appropriate academic support e-tool in the course under coronavirus (COVID-19) lockdown.

Research limitations/implications

This exploratory pragmatic study extends the knowledge of the online academic support e-tools for an open distance e-learning (ODeL) context that was used under COVID-19 lockdown. This study provides additional evidence concerning a revised academic support frame for an ODeL online learning context. Research limitations: small sample size was used, and therefore caution must be applied, as the findings might not be transferable to a similar context. The current study has only examined a teacher education course and could not be generalised to similar conditions as those under COVID-19 lockdown. This exploratory research has raised many questions that require further investigation. More research is required to determine the efficacy of the academic support e-tools with regard to student learning in other online courses and contexts.

Practical implications

The student teachers that participated in this study were empowered to using the academic support e-tools to support them under COVID-19 lockdown. The discussion was mostly preferred academic supportive e-tool as an engaged, participatory and communicative platform for accelerated learning in the teaching methodology of economics course.

Originality/value

A noteworthy contribution was made in the design and testing of the reliability of methodological tools, which could be replicated in blended and ODeL contexts.

Details

Interactive Technology and Smart Education, vol. 18 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1741-5659

Keywords

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