Go for zero tolerance : Cultural values, trust, and acceptance of zero-COVID policy in two Chinese societies

Research output: Journal Publications and ReviewsRGC 21 - Publication in refereed journalpeer-review

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Original languageEnglish
Article number1047486
Journal / PublicationFrontiers in Psychology
Online published22 Nov 2022
Publication statusPublished - 2022



This study seeks to explain the wide acceptance of the stringent zero-COVID policy in two Chinese societies—Mainland China (n = 2,184) and Taiwan (n = 1,128)—from perspectives of cultural values and trust. By employing the efficacy mechanism, this study identifies significant indirect effects of trust in government and key opinion leaders (KOL) on people’s policy acceptance in both societies. Namely, people who interpret the pandemic as a collectivist issue and who trust in government will be more accepting of the zero-COVID policy, whereas those who framed the pandemic as an individual issue tend to refuse the policy. Trust in government and KOLs foster these direct relationships, but trust in government functions as a more important mediator in both societies. The different contexts of the two Chinese societies make the difference when shaping these relationships. These findings provide practical considerations for governmental agencies and public institutions that promote the acceptance of the zero-COVID policy during the pandemic.

Research Area(s)

  • zero-COVID, collectivism, individualism, trust in government, trust in KOL, Chinese societies

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