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Associate Professor of the Department of Asian and Policy Studies joins research team on people’s perception on- and preventive behavior against the Coronavirus (2019-nCoV)

Since early January, the rapid spread of the novel coronavirus (2019-nCoV) from Wuhan to the rest of China has triggered a grave public health crisis. The steady increase of infected cases in Hong Kong, Taiwan and overseas has intensified global concern. In order to gauge Chinese people’s perception and individual behaviors against the epidemic, an interdisciplinary research team comprised of social scientists from Peking University, Princeton University, the Education University of Hong Kong (EdUHK), Fudan University, Beijing Normal University, and Chinese Academy of Sciences was formed. Dr Alex He Jingwei, Associate Professor of Department of Asian and Policy Studies, EdUHK joined the team as a core member.


The research team conducted a nation-wide electronic survey from January 26, and the result of Round 1 was released on January 29. As of noon January 27, over 11 thousand respondents participated in the survey, covering 31 provinces all over China. The sampl also included responses from Hong Kong, Macau, Taiwan, and oversea. The study found that the Coronavirus has brought out intense psychological stress to participants. In compliance with personal hygienic practices, the vast majority wear masks regularly and reduce or even canceled outdoor activities including travels. Yet, even though over 90% knew that performing hand hygiene frequently is an effective way to prevent the disease, there is no significant increase in behavioral compliance. Participants offered very high rating to the frontline healthcare professionals and healthcare systems in terms of their contribution in combating the coronavirus outbreak, whereas the governments in Hubei Province and Wuhan City were rated in low scores. Moreover,  approximately 80% of respondents anticipated that the outbreak to last for 3 months.

For more details of the survey results, please visit (Simplified Chinese only)