Year of Publication

2014

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Document Type

Doctoral Dissertation

College

Communication and Information

Department

Communication

First Advisor

Dr. Bobi Ivanov

Abstract

This paper focuses on the problem of collapsed “stay in the market” (SIM) beliefs during financial crises. The primary purpose of this investigation was to ascertain whether or not inoculation messages represent a viable communication strategy to preemptively protect SIM beliefs during forthcoming financial crises. Ancillary purposes of this study were to further investigate the role of print and video crises, explicit instructions regarding post-inoculation talk (PIT), and gain and loss frame inoculation messages on the inoculation process. This study used a between subjects factorial design (3 x 2 plus four additional conditions) to explore ten hypotheses. Data collected from 513 participants were analyzed using multivariate and univariate tests and planned comparisons. The results of this investigation indicate that inoculation messages can serve as a viable preemptive crisis communication strategy, that inoculation can protect beliefs equally well when the crisis message is presented through video or print, and that employing a loss frame can strengthen the inoculation process. Mixed results regarding PIT call for further research. Research and practical implications, as well as limitations, are discussed.