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A systematic review of social research data collection methods used to investigate voluntary animal disease reporting behaviour

Enticott, Gareth ORCID:, Earl, Lynsey and Gates, M. Carolyn 2022. A systematic review of social research data collection methods used to investigate voluntary animal disease reporting behaviour. Transboundary and Emerging Diseases 69 (8) , pp. 2573-2587. 10.1111/tbed.14407

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Voluntary detection of emerging disease outbreaks is considered essential for limiting their potential impacts on livestock industries. However, many of the strategies employed by animal health authorities to capture data on potential emerging disease threats rely on farmers and veterinarians identifying situations of concern and then voluntarily taking appropriate actions to notify animal health authorities. To improve the performance of these systems, it is important to understand the range of socio-cultural factors influencing the willingness of individuals to engage with disease reporting such as trust in government, perceived economic impacts, social stigma, and perceptions of ‘good farming’. The objectives of this systematic review were to assess how different social research methodologies have been employed to understand the role these socio-cultural dimensions play in voluntary disease reporting and to discuss limitations to address in future research. The review uncovered 39 relevant publications that employed a range of quantitative and qualitative methodologies including surveys, interviews, focus groups, scenarios, observations, mixed-methods, interventions, and secondary data analysis. While these studies provided valuable insights, one significant challenge remains eliciting accurate statements of behaviour and intentions rather than those that reflect desirable social norms. There is scope to develop methodological innovations to study the decision to report animal disease to help overcome the gap between what people say they do and their observable behaviour. A notable absence is studies exploring specific interventions designed to encourage disease reporting. Greater clarity in specifying the disease contexts, behavioural mechanisms and outcomes, and the relationships between them would provide a more theoretically informed and policy relevant understanding of how disease reporting works, for which farmers, and in which disease contexts.

Item Type: Article
Date Type: Publication
Status: Published
Schools: Geography and Planning (GEOPL)
Publisher: Wiley
ISSN: 1865-1674
Date of First Compliant Deposit: 6 December 2021
Date of Acceptance: 22 November 2021
Last Modified: 06 Nov 2023 18:22

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