Communications that include nudges and framing strategies are ubiquitous in our daily lives. In this paper, we investigate how different nudging strategies during a public health campaign, particularly supplementary information and statistics, influence perceptions of threat and stockpiling intentions, while also considering the role of childhood socioeconomic status. Specifically, building upon prior work in behavioral economics, we hypothesize that the presence of additional statistics elicits lower perceived threat and intention to stockpile. In addition, we predict find that the childhood socioeconomic status of individuals influences these effects. Three studies offer evidence for those predictions and demonstrate the importance of message framing in uncertain circumstances. Overall, this work contributes to the literature on nudging and life history theory by investigating how communication strategies can be used to increase or decrease perceived threat in order to achieve desired outcomes (e.g., limiting stockpiling or respecting social distancing).
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