Dataset Information


Who Trusts the WHO? Heuristics and Americans' Trust in the World Health Organization During the COVID-19 Pandemic.



Why do some Americans trust the World Health Organization (WHO) during the COVID-19 pandemic, but others do not? To date, there has been no examination of trust in the WHO. Yet the global nature of the pandemic necessitates expanding our scholarship to international health organizations. We test the effects of partisanship, ideology, the cooperative internationalist foreign policy orientation, and nationalism on trust in the WHO and subsequently examine how this trust relates to preventive health behavior.


Multivariate analysis of original survey data from a representative sample of Americans.


Democrats, liberals, and those with a strong cooperative internationalist foreign policy orientation are more likely to trust the WHO's competence and integrity in responding to the COVID-19 pandemic while Republicans, conservatives, and nationalists are less likely. Even though trust in the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) has the largest impact on preventive health behaviors, trust in the competence of the WHO is also an important factor. These results remain robust after controlling for other covariates.


Pandemic politics in the United States is polarized along party and ideological lines. However, our results show that a fuller understanding Americans' political trust and health behaviors during COVID-19 requires taking the international dimensions of the pandemic seriously.

PROVIDER: S-EPMC8242889 | BioStudies |

REPOSITORIES: biostudies

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