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Trust in science, social consensus, and vaccine confidence

Sturgis, Patrick ORCID: 0000-0003-1180-3493, Brunton-Smith, Ian and Jackson, Jonathan ORCID: 0000-0003-2426-2219 (2021) Trust in science, social consensus, and vaccine confidence. Nature Human Behaviour, 5 (11). pp. 1528-1534. ISSN 2397-3374

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Identification Number: 10.1038/s41562-021-01115-7


While scholarly attention to date has focused almost entirely on individual-level drivers of vaccine confidence, we show that macro-level factors play an important role in understanding individual propensity to be confident about vaccination. We analyse data from the 2018 Wellcome Global Monitor survey covering over 120,000 respondents in 126 countries to assess how societal-level trust in science is related to vaccine confidence. In countries with a high aggregate level of trust in science, people are more likely to be confident about vaccination, over and above their individual-level scientific trust. Additionally, we show that societal consensus around trust in science moderates these individual-level and country-level relationships. In countries with a high level of consensus regarding the trustworthiness of science and scientists, the positive correlation between trust in science and vaccine confidence is stronger than it is in comparable countries where the level of social consensus is weaker.

Item Type: Article
Official URL:
Additional Information: © 2021 The Authors, under exclusive licence to Springer Nature Limited.
Divisions: Methodology
Subjects: R Medicine > RA Public aspects of medicine > RA0421 Public health. Hygiene. Preventive Medicine
H Social Sciences > HM Sociology
B Philosophy. Psychology. Religion > BF Psychology
Date Deposited: 19 Apr 2021 09:57
Last Modified: 17 Apr 2024 05:39

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