Robert Böhm

Robert Böhm
University of Vienna | UniWien · Fakultät für Psychologie

Doctor of Psychology

About

135
Publications
121,182
Reads
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3,818
Citations
Additional affiliations
October 2019 - present
University of Copenhagen
Position
  • Professor
July 2013 - September 2019
RWTH Aachen University
Position
  • Professor (Assistant)
October 2010 - June 2013
Universität Erfurt
Position
  • PostDoc Position
Education
October 2007 - September 2010
Friedrich Schiller University Jena
Field of study
  • Social and Economic Psychology
October 2002 - September 2007
Technische Universität Chemnitz
Field of study
  • Psychology and Intercultural Communication

Publications

Publications (135)
Article
Full-text available
Most vaccines protect both the vaccinated individual and the society by reducing the transmission of infectious diseases. In order to eliminate infectious diseases, individuals need to consider social welfare beyond mere self-interest—regardless of ethnic, religious, or national group borders. It has therefore been proposed that vaccination poses a...
Article
Full-text available
Mandatory and voluntary mask policies may have yet unknown social and behavioral consequences related to the effectiveness of the measure, stigmatization, and perceived fairness. Serial cross-sectional data (April 14 to May 26, 2020) from nearly 7,000 German participants demonstrate that implementing a mandatory policy increased actual compliance d...
Article
Significance Amid climate change and pandemics, humans increasingly face shared problems that require cooperation. However, cooperation is plagued with the free-rider problem and can fail. Self-reliance—the ability to solve shared problems individually—remedies the problem of cooperation but forgoes benefits of collective action and can lead to a d...
Article
Full-text available
Intergroup conflict is a persistent companion of the human existence. Why do individuals engage in intergroup conflict as often as they do? We propose that groups’ tendencies to present intergroup conflict as the default option and individuals’ tendencies to disproportionately choose default options fuel individual participation in intergroup confl...
Article
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Most vaccines not only directly protect vaccinated individuals but also provide a social benefit through community protection. Therefore, vaccination can be considered a prosocial act to protect others. We review the recent empirical evidence on (i) how prosocial concerns relate to vaccination intentions and (ii) promoting prosocial vaccination thr...
Article
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Background: COVID-19 booster vaccine uptake rates are behind the rate of primary vaccination in many countries. Governments and non-governmental institutions rely on a range of interventions aiming to increase booster uptake. Yet, little is known how experts and the general public evaluate these interventions. Methods: We applied a novel crowdsourc...
Article
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In the metaverse, users will actively engage with 3D content using extended reality (XR). Such XR platforms can stimulate a revolution in health communication, moving from information-based to experience-based content. We outline three major application domains and describe how the XR affordances (presence, agency and embodiment) can improve health...
Article
Full-text available
During the current COVID-19 pandemic, governments must make decisions based on a variety of information including estimations of infection spread, health care capacity, economic and psychosocial considerations. The disparate validity of current short-term forecasts of these factors is a major challenge to governments. By causally linking an establi...
Preprint
Full-text available
Background: COVID-19 booster vaccine uptake rates are behind the rate of primary vaccination in many countries. Governments and non-governmental institutions rely on a range of interventions aiming to increase booster uptake. Yet, little is known how experts and the general public evaluate these interventions. Methods: We applied a novel crowdsourc...
Article
Full-text available
To reach high vaccination rates against COVID-19, children and adolescents should be also vaccinated. To improve childhood vaccination rates and vaccination readiness, parents need to be addressed since they decide about the vaccination of their children. We adapted the 7C of vaccination readiness scale to measure parents’ readiness to vaccinate th...
Preprint
Full-text available
This study investigates the impact of an immersive virtual reality (VR) simulation of herd immunity on vaccination intentions and its potential underlying mechanisms. In this preregistered field study, N = 654 participants were randomly assigned to one of the three VR conditions: (1) Gamified Herd Immunity; (2) Gamified Herd Immunity + Empathy (wit...
Preprint
Mitigation of the COVID-19 pandemic requires continued uptake of SARS-CoV-2 vaccines. Using experimental data collected in Germany in February 2022 (N = 2,701), this study investigated (a) predictors of primary and booster vaccination and (b) potential effects of policies combining vaccination mandates and monetary incentives. Compared to unvaccina...
Article
Full-text available
Ending the COVID-19 pandemic will require rapid large-scale uptake of vaccines against the disease. Mandating vaccination is discussed as a suitable strategy to increase uptake. In a series of cross-sectional quota-representative surveys and two preregistered experiments conducted in Germany and the US (total N = 4629), we investigated (i) correlat...
Article
Full-text available
During the COVID-19 pandemic, various behavioral measures were imposed to curb the spread of the virus. In a preregistered study based on a quota-representative sample of adult Danish citizens (N = 1,031), we compared the prevalence estimates of self-reported handwashing, physical distancing, and attitudes toward the behavioral measures between peo...
Article
Full-text available
Vaccine hesitancy poses one of the largest threats to global health. Informing people about the collective benefit of vaccination has great potential in increasing vaccination intentions. This research investigates the potential for engaging experiences in immersive virtual reality (VR) to strengthen participants’ understanding of community immunit...
Article
Full-text available
Background: Regarding the COVID-19 pandemic, concerted efforts have been invested in research to investigate and communicate the importance of complying with protective behaviors, such as handwashing and mask wearing. Protective measures vary in how effective they are in protecting the individual against infection, how much experience people have w...
Article
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Nielsen et al. (1) argue that Van Doesum et al. (2) need to consider three points for their interpretation of a positive association between individual-level social mindfulness (SoMi) and environmental performance (EPI) at the country level (3). The association is weaker when 1) it is controlled for GDP and 2) when the data of three countries are r...
Article
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Contact tracing apps have been identified as a promising technology to curb the spread of COVID-19. To be effective, a sufficient number of individuals needs to install the app and to disclose information like a COVID-19 infection to such an app. Yet, usage data demonstrates that a large amount of app users does not disclose a COVID-19 infection to...
Article
Full-text available
Background Vaccination is the most effective means of preventing the spread of infectious diseases. Despite the proven benefits of vaccination, vaccine hesitancy keeps many people from getting vaccinated. Methods and findings We conducted a large-scale cluster randomized controlled trial in Finland to test the effectiveness of centralized written...
Article
Background: Mandating vaccination against COVID-19 is often discussed as a means to counter low vaccine uptake. Beyond the potential legal, ethical, and psychological concerns, a successful implementation also needs to consider citizens’ support for such a policy. Public attitudes toward vaccination mandates and their determinants might differ over...
Article
The COVID-19 pandemic has hit humanity globally. Besides its obvious threats to our physical health and economic stability, one can only speculate about the pandemic’s and its countermeasures’ psychosocial impacts. Here, we took advantage of a sample of healthy male participants who had completed psychosocial measures on mental health, environmenta...
Article
Full-text available
Objective: An effective vaccine against COVID-19 is a desired solution to curb the spread of the disease. However, vaccine hesitancy might hinder high uptake rates and thus undermine efforts to eliminate COVID-19 once an effective vaccine became available. The present contribution addresses this issue by examining two ways of increasing the intent...
Preprint
As vaccination campaigns for COVID-19 fail to achieve sufficient immunization rates, public discord between the vaccinated and the unvaccinated has intensified globally. To explore the idea that identifying with one's vaccination status plays a key role in this societal polarization, the study draws on unique survey data from large samples of vacci...
Article
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The increasing development of resistant pathogens is one of the greatest global health challenges. As antibiotic overuse amplifies antibiotic resistance, antibiotic intake poses a social dilemma in which individuals need to decide whether to prosocially reduce their intake in the collective interest versus to (over)use it even in case of mild disea...
Preprint
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The existence and potential consequences of pandemic fatigue have been debated fiercely. We introduce a theoretical conceptualization and brief measure of this much debated construct. Using this measure across two large repeated cross-sectional surveys in Denmark and Germany and one panel survey in Denmark (overall N = 34,582), we provide evidence...
Article
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Deception of research participants has long been and remains a hot-button issue in the behavioral sciences. At the same time, the field of psychology is fortunate to have an ethics code to rely on in determining whether and how to use and report on deception of participants. Despite ongoing normative controversies, a smallest common denominator amo...
Article
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During COVID-19, conspiracy theories were intensely discussed in the media. Generally, both believing in specific conspiracy theories (i.e., explanations for events based on powerholders’ secret arrangements) and the general tendency to believe in conspiracy theories—a so-called conspiracy mentality—have been found to predict cognition and behavior...
Article
Individuals and institutions around the world have been affected by the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). Herein, we investigate the role of basic (Big Five and HEXACO) and specific (Dark Factor of Personality, Narcissistic Rivalry, and Narcissistic Admiration) personality traits for 17 criteria related to COVID-19, grouped into (i) personal per...
Article
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Die bisherigen Maßnahmen zur Steigerung der Impfbereitschaft reichen offensichtlich nicht, um die erforderliche Impfquote zu erzielen. Über verschiedene Arten verpflichtender Regelungen und die Vor- und Nachteile einer Impfpflicht muss nachgedacht werden.
Preprint
Full-text available
Trotz aktuell steigender Impfbereitschaft unter den Erstimpfungen ist nicht abzusehen, dass die vom RKI geforderten Impfquoten für die künftige Kontrolle des SARS-CoV-2 Virus mit den bisherigen Maßnahmen zur Steigerung der Impfbereitschaft erreicht werden können (Stand: Ende November, 2021). Daher werden in diesem Artikel drei Typen verpflichtender...
Preprint
Full-text available
Governmental responses to the frequently occurring terrorist hostage-takings, in which authorities must weigh the lives of the hostages against the lives of potential future victims, depend on popular support for governmental policy. Despite this, little is known about how people form their judgement of governmental policies in this moral dilemma....
Preprint
Full-text available
During the COVID-19 pandemic, different behavioral measures were imposed to curb the spread of the virus. In a pre-registered study based on a quota-representative sample of adult Danish citizens (N = 1,031), we compared the prevalence estimates of self-reported handwashing, physical distancing, and attitudes towards the behavioral measures between...
Article
Full-text available
Psychological Reactance Theory assumes that the restriction of valued behaviors elicits anger and negative cognitions, motivating actions to regain the limited freedom. Two studies investigated the effects of two possible restrictions affecting COVID-19 vaccination: the limitation of non-vaccination by mandates and the limitation of vaccination by...
Preprint
Full-text available
To reach high vaccination rates against COVID-19, children and adolescents should be also vaccinated. To improve childhood vaccination rates and vaccination readiness, parents need to be addressed since they decide about the vaccination of their children. We adapted the 7C of vaccination readiness scale to measure parents’ readiness to vaccinate th...
Article
Full-text available
Effective interventions for increasing people’s intention to get vaccinated are crucial for global health, especially considering COVID-19. We devised a novel intervention using virtual reality (VR) consisting of a consultation with a general practitioner for communicating the benefits of COVID-19 vaccination and, in turn, increasing the intention...
Article
Full-text available
Background During the COVID-19 pandemic, public perceptions and behaviours have had to adapt rapidly to new risk scenarios and radical behavioural restrictions. Aim To identify major drivers of acceptance of protective behaviours during the 4-week transition from virtually no COVID-19 cases to the nationwide lockdown in Germany (3–25 March 2020)....
Article
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Age is a critical risk factor for severe COVID-19. This is mirrored by older people showing preventive health behaviors more frequently. However, collective action across all age groups is necessary to reduce transmission. Therefore, this study assessed whether age differences are moderated by policy changes and whether policies further moderate th...
Article
Full-text available
While the ontogeny of prosociality during infancy, childhood, and adolescence has received substantial attention over the last decades, little is known about how prosocial preferences develop beyond emerging adulthood. Recent evidence suggests that the previously observed positive association between age and prosocial preferences is less robust tha...
Article
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The strategy method is a powerful method for eliciting conditional cooperation in strategic interactions. Theoretically, players' cooperation conditional on a specific level of others' cooperation using the strategy method should be equal to their unconditional cooperation given an equivalent belief about others' cooperation. However, using the Pri...
Article
Full-text available
Humans are social animals, but not everyone will be mindful of others to the same extent. Individual differences have been found, but would social mindfulness also be shaped by one’s location in the world? Expecting cross-national differences to exist, we examined if and how social mindfulness differs across countries. At little to no material cost...
Preprint
Full-text available
Participation in intergroup conflict is often framed as a matter of ‘in-group love’ or ‘out-group hate’. Indeed, theoretical accounts including social identity theory and parochial altruism suggest that such group-based preferences are inextricably linked. According to this view, individuals engage in intergroup conflict, including harmful behaviou...
Preprint
Full-text available
Background. Vaccine hesitancy poses one of the biggest threats to global health. Informing people about the collective benefit of vaccination due to community immunity has great potential in increasing vaccination intentions. Novel communication formats are needed to increase people’s interest in and engagement with such information, boosting the i...
Article
Full-text available
In real-world intergroup conflict, not all in-group members are equally threatened by the out-group. Yet, the impact of intragroup payoff asymmetry on the inclination to mutually cooperate during intergroup conflict and therefore to protect against out-group attacks, i.e., the “conflict-cooperation effect,” has not been investigated so far. In Stud...
Article
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It is often important to study people’s thoughts, feelings, and behaviors over time. To this end, researchers have relied on repeated cross-sectional studies, in which different people from the same population participate on different measurement occasions. Also, researchers have relied on panel studies, in which the same group of people participat...
Article
Full-text available
Despite the omnipresence of inter-group conflicts, little is known about the heterogeneity and stability of individuals' social preferences toward in-group and out-group members. To identify the prevalence and stability of social preferences in inter-group conflict, we gather quota-representative, incentivized data from a lab-in-the-field study dur...
Preprint
Full-text available
Cooperation is essential to overcome global pandemics and other health crises, as many preventative measures require people to bear a personal cost to benefit other people or society as a whole. Wearing a face mask, for example, protects other people more than it protects oneself. In this essay, we discuss several mechanisms that are known to promo...
Article
Full-text available
Prosocial behaviors constitute vital ingredients for all types of social interactions and relationships as well as for society at large. Corresponding to this significance, the study of prosocial behaviors has received considerable attention across scientific disciplines. A striking feature of this research is that most disciplines rely on economic...
Preprint
Full-text available
Background Vaccination is the most effective means to prevent the spread of infectious diseases. Despite the proven benefits of vaccination, complacency, constraints, and lacking confidence keep many people away from getting vaccinated. This study investigates how written reminders with varying information contents to address vaccine hesitancy affe...
Article
Full-text available
Although vaccines are among the most effective interventions used in fighting diseases, vaccination readiness varies substantially among individuals. Vaccination readiness is defined as a set of components that increase or decrease the individual’s likelihood of getting vaccinated. Building on earlier work that distinguished five components of vacc...
Preprint
The strategy method is a powerful method for eliciting conditional cooperation in strategic interactions. Theoretically, players' cooperation conditional on a specifi?c level of others' cooperation using the strategy method should be equal to their unconditional cooperation given an equivalent belief about others' cooperation. However, using the Pr...
Preprint
Full-text available
Ending the COVID-19 pandemic will require rapid large-scale uptake of vaccines against the disease. Mandating vaccination is discussed as a suitable strategy to increase uptake. In a series of cross-sectional quota-representative surveys and two preregistered experiments conducted in Germany and the US (total N = 4,629), we investigated (i) correla...
Preprint
Full-text available
Objective: An effective vaccine against COVID-19 is a desired solution to curb the spread of the disease. However, vaccine hesitancy might hinder high uptake rates and thus undermine efforts to eliminate COVID-19 once an effective vaccine became available. The present contribution addresses this issue by examining two ways of increasing the intenti...
Article
Full-text available
The COVID-19 pandemic has required massive behavioural adaptions to curb the spread of the disease. Since March 2020, the COVID-19 Snapshot MOnitoring (COSMO) survey has assessed (and will continue to do so) Danish citizens’ perceptions and behavioural reactions to the COVID-19 pandemic. Herein, we report selected results of the COSMO survey, highl...
Article
Unethical behavior is often accompanied by others covering up a transgressor’s actions. We devised a novel behavioral paradigm, the Unethical Loyalty Game, to specifically study individuals’ willingness to lie to cover up others’ dishonesty. Specifically, we examined (i) whether and to what extent individuals are willing to lie to cover up others’...
Article
Full-text available
The COVID-19 pandemic presents a major challenge to societies all over the globe. To curb the spread of the disease, two measures implemented in many countries are minimizing close contact between people (“physical distancing”) and wearing face masks. In the present research, we tested the idea that physical distancing and wearing face masks can be...
Article
Full-text available
We review psychological research on intergroup conflict. First, we outline psychological perspectives on forms and functions of groups. Second, we present the most influential psychological theories of intergroup conflict and describe their similarities and differences in predicting individual prejudice, discrimination, and conflict engagement. Thi...
Article
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To avoid the dangerous consequences of climate change, humans need to overcome two intertwined conflicts. First, they must deal with an intra-generational conflict that emerges from the allocation of costs of climate change mitigation among different actors of the current generation. Second, they face an inter-generational conflict that stems from...
Article
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In the present research, we test the mechanisms (Studies 1a and 1b, conducted online), consequences, and limitations (Study 2, conducted in the lab) of anthropomorphizing autonomous (vs. manual) products. Building on previous theoretical and empirical research on product anthropomorphism, we argue and find that anthropomorphism is perceived to be m...
Preprint
Full-text available
During the current COVID-19 pandemic, governments must make decisions based on a variety of information including estimations of infection spread, health care capacity, economic and psychosocial considerations. The disparate validity of current short-term forecasts of these factors is a major challenge to governments. By causally linking an establi...