ESSB researchers in the media on impact coronavirus

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Our ESSB researchers are reflecting or working on the impact of the coronavirus from the perspective of their own disciplines. Below you will find various publications.

‘If you ascribe intent to everything, you’re more likely to believe in conspiracy theories’

Conspiracy theories have existed for hundreds of years, but in this time with the increasing importance of social media it can be seen that conspiracy theories have an increasing influence. In addition, many events in our reality have nothing to do with each other and are the mere result of chance. However, people do have a tendency to see intentionality behind everything. ‘If you ascribe intent to everything, you’re more likely to believe in conspiracy theories’, Prof. dr. Rolf Zwaan in Erasmus Magazine

Daphne van de Bongardt on COVID-19 and youth welfare (especially effects on social relations)

Plea: Don't forget the youth and their friends

Many corona measures of municipalities affect youth sectors. It is important that they take into account the important role of relationships with peers for youth welfare, says Dr. Daphne van de Bongardt in an article of the Vereniging van Nederlandse Gemeente (VNG) (in Dutch).

How are the peers doing?

How do adolescents deal with peers in times of COVID-19? What impact do the first and new government guidelines and social changes have on contacts and relationships between siblings, classmates, friends and young loved ones? And what does this do to youth welfare? Dr. Daphne van de Bongardt gives advice on how to deal with this in a longread at Pedagogiek in Praktijk (in Dutch).

You don't make new friends through a screen

Physical distance now means social distance. The transition to university and the establishment of new relationships that come with it is an important developmental task, and new students fall short in this task. This is what Dr. Daphne van de Bongardt states in NRC (in Dutch). Initial reports indicate that some adolescents experience psychological complaints as a result, while some are doing very well at university.

Despondent because of corona - and that house party is not the solution

Research shows that young people suffer most psychologically from the corona measures. For example, research by EenVandaag shows that 74 percent of 18 to 35-year-olds suffer mentally from the corona crisis, compared to 48 percent of over-65s. Prof. Dr. Eveline Crone, professor of neuropsychology, explains in the NRC (in Dutch) why young people in particular suffer so much mentally from the coronacrisis and she gives advice to young people.

The #ikdoenietmeermee-action finds a hearing among young people

Dozens of Dutch celebrities, especially from the entertainment industry, used the hashtag #ikdoenietmeermee. They wrote the statement "I say NO to all measures until the government can verifiably justify this policy". Minister Hugo de Jonge called the action of the influencers Tuesday "irresponsible" and "dangerous". Prof. Dr. Moniek Buijzen and Dr. Esther Roozendaal explain in the NRC how the hashtag can influence young people.

Doom-thinking is the greatest danger in the corona crisis

Confidence in the government is still high, but is decreasing slightly compared to the beginning of the crisis. As the pandemic continues, the nuisance from neighbors and people on the streets is actually increasing. Are these trends continuing? What can the Dutch citizen's state of mind still cope with in the COVID-19 crisis? "The greatest danger is that people think it's all pointless", according to Prof. Dr. Godfried Engbersen in Reporters Online.

The corona crisis also affected groups who thought they were safe. 'This calls for a new policy'. 

The social damage caused by the coronavirus does not only affect the traditionally vulnerable groups; the people with weak health and low incomes. There are new vulnerable groups, says Prof. Dr. Godfried Engbersen in Trouw (in Dutch). Young people with an MBO, HBO or university education, for example, or highly educated freelancers who until recently made good money.

New reality calls for continuing education

Prof. Dr. Godfried Engbersen pleads for permanent education to combat the major labour market problem that awaits us due to the corona crisis in Binnenlands Bestuur (in Dutch).

'Tackling the spread of coronavirus in disadvantaged neighbourhoods is lacking'.

Prof. Dr. Godfried Engbersen explains on BNR nieuwsradio (in Dutch) why the coronavirus spreads faster in disadvantaged neighborhoods and proposes to do less abstract government communication in these neighborhoods.

Eleven professors: giving press conferences is no longer enough

Eleven professors, including Prof. Dr. Semiha Denktas, argue in the NRC why the government should communicate better what the corona measures are, to help people better assess the risks. "...In order to stop the spread of the virus, citizens must behave in a way they are not used to. Insights from the behavioural and communication sciences therefore play an important role in creating and maintaining support for it". Read the entire article on www.nrc.nl (in Dutch)

A admonishing tone from Rutte and RIVM to young people makes little sense

There was criticism of the way Prime Minister Rutte and the RIVM gave speeches to young people at the press conference. On Radio 1, Prof. Dr. Eveline Crone explains why this way of communicating does not make much sense.

"Opportunity is not only about noble intentions, but also about effective action"

Schools have massively set up summer schools so that pupils who have fallen behind can catch up again in recent months. The intentions are good, but there are question marks about their implementation. Illias El Hadioui explains in the newspaper Trouw (in Dutch) that the programmes would be more meaningful if schools based these summer schools more on scientific insights and set clearer goals.

Implications of pandemic for the lives of people all over the world

A group of 18 international researchers, including Prof. Dr. Pearl Dykstra, pooled their expertise to illustrate how a life course perspective can contribute to understanding the impact of the pandemic on individuals, families and populations.

Read their essay here

Protection state new style

Municipalities need extra resources,' says Prof. Engbersen in Publiek Denken (in Dutch), 'because unemployment is rising, there are more people who need assistance, more needs to be done to combat poverty and debt relief. Highly educated people may be able to move up quickly, but what do you do for people who are distanced from the labour market? Perhaps basic jobs should be created, for example in the cultural sector. Real work in the public sector, whatever they are paid for'.

Corona rules are often too difficult

Many people find the information about corona rules difficult to understand. Especially people who have difficulty reading and writing. Or those who only just came to live in the Netherlands and come from another country. Or who live in a neighborhood with many problems. They also have more stress than before the arrival of the new Corona virus. And that has consequences for their health. This is shown by research by national expertise centre Pharos and Prof. Dr. Semiha Denktas.

Role of grandparents of vital importance

Families are one of the few remaining places in our society where members of different generations have contact' 'That's good for social cohesion,' says Prof. Dr. Pearl Dykstra in De Correspondent (in Dutch).

New vulnerable groups due to coronacrisis

The corona crisis affects not only the classically vulnerable groups, but also new groups such as freelancers and employees with flexitime contracts. Professor of sociology Prof. Dr. Godfried Engbersen in Zorg en Welzijn (in Dutch) is deeply concerned about young people and their future prospects.

On the frightened society due to the coronacrisis

Sociologist Prof. Dr. Godfried Engbersen in Erasmus Magazine and Studio Erasmus Podcast (in Dutch) in conversation with Geert Maarse about the results of his research into the social consequences of COVID-19. 

On the quality of science following the many scientific publications on COVID-19

Prof. Rolf Zwaan in conversation with Erasmus Magazine about the large number of scientific publications on offer worldwide. How publication pressure can lead to poorer science and how can you hold your own as a news consumer?

On resilience of the youth in times of lockdown

Prof. Dr. Eveline Crone in conversation with Geert Maarse of Studio Erasmus Podcast (in Dutch)

"I think young people are creative, and always find ways to deal with a crisis."

Puberty and lockdown

Puberty can be tough, even in the best of times, and Prof. Dr. Eveline Crone’s interdisciplinary research group has begun to examine how the adolescent brain is affected by lockdown. Her hope is that young people will show resilience during this crisis, leading to a better future. Her fear is that the crisis will increase social inequalities for teens. Eveline Crone talks with Science Business.

The city after corona

Behavioural scientist Prof. Dr. Semiha Denktas on changes in the public space in response to corona in Nieuwsuur (in Dutch)

Rotation | the world in transition after corona

Podcast with Prof. Jan Rotmans, professor of transition management at BNR news radio (in Dutch)

For a moment the world seemed to stand still because of corona. We philosophized about a world after corona that would look different. But we got ahead of ourselves too quickly according to professor of transition management Jan Rotmans. According to him, a lot of unrest and conflict is still needed to actually go through a transition. What awaits us?

Don't forget the youth and their friends

"Many municipal coronation measures affect youth sectors. It is important that they take into account the important role of relationships with peers for youth welfare". Says Dr. Daphne van de Bongardt in VNG Magazine (in Dutch). She also gives 5 tips. Download her article here.

Erasmus University students support students remotely with homework and the Dutch language

It is well known that many pupils are lagging behind in their learning due to the corona crisis. But for pupils whose mother tongue is not Dutch, the corona crisis also means that their Dutch language skills are deteriorating because Dutch is often not spoken at home. Students of Erasmus University Rotterdam therefore help these children with one hour of digital private lessons and homework supervision and receive training in stimulating resilience from Dr. Brian Godor and Dr. Ruth van der Hallen. RTV Rijnmond visited psychology student Fabiënne Hoogendoorn who is calling Eliza and Kate from South Africa, listen to the excerpt here (in Dutch). 

Corona crisis demands a lot from young people

Interview with Prof. Dr. Eveline Crone in the Noord Hollands Dagblad (in Dutch) about what it does to young people, now that the final exam rituals are not there this year because of corona measures. Download the article here.

Citizens help each other through corona

Interview with Prof. Dr. Godfried Engbersen on the occasion of the report 'Berichten uit de Stille Stad' ('Messages from the Silent City') about trust in neighbours and government in times of corona. In the Volkskrant (in Dutch) of May 28th 2020

Fear in times of corona

Prof. Dr. Godfried Engbersen shows the importance of the insights of sociology and social sciences in the 'fearful' society in De Groene Amsterdammer (in Dutch). On this topic he also speaks in Erasmus Magazine (in English) and the Studio Erasmus podcast ( in Dutch) 

Why do adolescents get stuck on the couch?

In the NRC (in Dutch), Prof. Dr. Eveline Crone talks about the effects of the corona measures on the adolescent brain, which could have a long lasting effect on their development.

Interview with Willem Schinkel about capitalism, socialism, and "wishful thinking"

The fact that in the corona crisis big capital is saved instead of labour is not a law of nature. In a socialist economy that would be quite different, says the Rotterdam sociologist Prof. dr. Willem Schinkel. A conversation about capitalism, socialism, and "wishful thinking" that system change arises from crises. Interview by: Alexander Beunder. Recorded on: May 15, 2020 on delockdown.nl (in Dutch)

Young people flock outside: police buried under nuisance reports

"That doesn't surprise me," says Prof. dr. Eveline Crone in the AD (in Dutch). "At this age, young people want to go out, meet, experiment and discover. Finding your own way in life is a very natural process. This development has come to an abrupt halt, as it were."

Corona-app or not?

To slow down the spread of coronavirus, there were talks about the possibility of an app quite early. Gerard van der Werf, senior researcher at consultancy firm Motivaction, and Prof. dr. Liesbet van Zoonen, academic director of the Center for BOLD Cities studied and discusses in Sociale Vraagstukken (in Dutch) the -fluctuating- level of concerns among citizens, their expectations and their readiness to install such an app.

Why does the general public have to save the market?

Necessity knows no law. Emergency measures have been implemented, without extensive democratic weighing, according to EUR professor in Social Theory Prof. dr. Willem Schinkel. This way large companies are saved with public money, while at the same time they're firing lots of employees. This is a subversion of democracy, Schinkel argues in the NRC (in Dutch).

Coronavirus affects minorities in the Netherlands less than in other western countries

In the Netherlands, just like in other western countries, more people pass away due to the coronavirus among minorities. However, that difference is smaller than in, for example, the US and England, according to the NOS (in Dutch). Prof. dr. Godfried Engbersen argues why.

Does nudging work in stimulating compliance with corona measures?

Arrows on the floor that guide you to the stairs, instead of the elevator: have you seen them? This is an example of nudging. Prof. dr. Semiha Denktas explains in 1Vandaag (in Dutch) how nudging can be utilized to ensure that people comply with corona measures. 

Don't forget the human dimension in the new Way of Work 1.5

How can companies open their doors in the one-and-a-half meter economy? The matter is too easily done away with as a practical design problem. In technocratic and economic solutions the human dimension seems to be missing. In Trouw (in Dutch) this issue is discussed in cooperation with Prof. dr. Arnold Bakker, professor in labour and organisational psychology.

The coronacrisis can be an 'unimaginable gamechanger' for the labor market

More inequality, big shifts in employment opportunities and more strict rules surrounding flexwork. The coronacrisis can change the labor market permanently. In NRC (in Dutch) occupational sociologist Fabian Dekker shares his thoughts.

Mini-lecture about work-life balance

Working from home during times of crisis causes an extra strain on the work-life balance, Prof. Dr. Laura den Dulk shows in her mini-lecture in the Vereniging van Bestuurskunde (in Dutch).

For the youth the crisis is extra hard

Social distancing and many things that are banned is hard for the teen-brain to comply with, Prof. Dr. Eveline Crone tells in Het Parool (in Dutch).

European emergency aid connected with corona and the Dutch public debate 

One-sidedness of the Dutch public debate about the emergency aid for badly affected European member states is worse than the diplomatic tactlessness of the actions of Mark Rutte and Wobke Hoekstra.

5 misconceptions addressed by public administrationists Reinout van der Veer, Markus Haverland, Michal Onderco in Sociale Vraagstukken (in Dutch)

How do you reach the youth?

Prof. Moniek Buijzen explains in NRC (in Dutch) how you can ensure that young people stick to the corona measures. According to her, there are opportunities in collaborating with influencers.

Is corona a tipping point in society?

"Society is rudely shaken up, so to speak, and confused. Therefore, things that are taken for granted and automatisms become visible, and you notice how relative they are." says sociologist Jack Burgers in Omroep de Meierij (in Dutch).

Research on the societal impact of Covid-19 on Rotterdam and the Netherlands - interviews with Prof. Godfriend Engbersen

NOS article Onderzoek naar impact coronacrisis: 'Mensen missen toekomstperspectief'(in Dutch).

17.00, 18.00. and 20.00 NOS journaal (min. 7.05) (in Dutch).

Rotterdammers zorgelijker over gevolgen Covid-19 dan anderen (NRC, in Dutch)

Rotterdammers voelen zich bedreigd door coronacrisis (maar er is ook een lichtpuntje) (AD - Rotterdam, in Dutch)

Interview with Godfried Engbersen in Sociale Vraagstukken (in Dutch)

Interview with Godfried Engbersen at Nieuws en Co (in Dutch)

Governance sociologist dr. Mark van Ostaijen on the corona crisis in various articles of the Volkskrant

Laat paniek niet omslaan in obsessieve fixatie op risico's (in Dutch)

De Nederlander gaat als een bungeejumper om met het coronagevaar (in Dutch)

De psychologie van thuisblijven: dit doet sociale isolatie met ons (in Dutch)

Translate the press conference of Rutte

Can the press conference of Rutte be translated? The cabinet does not reach all the citizens if they only communicate in Dutch, public administrationists Angelique van Dam, MSc, Ilona van Breugel, MSc, and dr. Warda Belabas argue in the Volkskrant (in Dutch)of April 24th 2020.

Equal opportunities in different classes

Educational sociologist Iliass El Hadioui provided the first webinar of the Gelijke Kansen Alliantie (GKA). A online masterclass (in Dutch) about the effects of the coronacrisis on equal opportunities in education in the short and long term. Watch this webinar on the website of GKA.

The storm that's coming; lessons of repetition during times of crisis

"The bill comes after the rescue. The interrupted game of accumulation and circulation will then continue", Prof dr. WIllem Schinkel predicts in his article in De Groene Amsterdammer (in Dutch). "Let us now conclude on a pact; to not embrace the needed sacrifices as reasonable, to not accept the impending violence."

Corona crisis as an unprecedented source of possibilities

Covid-19 disrupts what were previously our normal patterns of work. The global pandemic is not only reshaping our work-life balance but accelerating us towards what used to be the future of work. Read Prof. dr. McCauley's full article in English in the ESSB News section.

Clean room, clear mind

A cleanup in your house while you stay at home is sensible in terms of mental health. It feels good to furnish or rearrange a place to only use for work for example, says behavioral scientist dr. Inge Merkelbach in EenVandaag. (in Dutch)

Directors need to learn to cope

Quality is under pressure when taking digital decisions, public administrationist Prof. Wolfgang Ebbers says in his article in AGconnect. (in Dutch)

Teenage brains in times of corona

Why is it for teenagers harder to stick to the rules and stay at home? Prof. Eveline Crone explains at Radio 1  (in Dutch) how the teenage brain works in times of corona.

Behavioural Change crucial in fight against COVID-19

How do you make people follow to the preventative measures of the government to curb the spread of COVID-19? Behavioural psychologist Prof. Semiha Denktas and colleagues demonstrate in the Dutch Journal of Medicine  (in Dutch) which scientific behavioural insights can be applied.

Corona and youngsters

Why is it particularly the youth that have issues with all these rules for corona? Developmental psychologist and PhD-student Suzanne van de Groep explains in NOS Stories (in Dutch).

Staying at home with kids during times of corona

Pedagogues Joyce Weeland and Rianne Kok give tips on how to make it easier on yourself and your child. You can read these tips here! (in Dutch)

Keeping your balance during this crisis

How do you make sure that your work-life balance does not destabilize due to working at home? Professor Laura den Dulk gives tips on Erasmus TV from minute 5 onwards.

Especially children from poor families fall behind due to school shutdowns

According to sociologist Iliass el Hadioui, the gap between poor and rich children will increase because of distance learning. How can we narrow this gap? You can read his interview in the AD. (in Dutch)

Brainstorms about the post-corona times

In the evening NOS news broadcast, during the 10th minute, prof. dr. Derk Loorbach elaborates on the brainstorms he conducts at DRIFT about the post-corona times. (in Dutch)

Fraternization during times of crises

Prof. dr. Derk Loorbach talks about new forms of social contact during times of corona in NOS journaal. (in Dutch)

District teams watch over vulnerable people

Although district teams need to work from distance, they do watch over vulnerable people. Public Administration specialist and PhD student Alissa van Zijl demonstrates in an article in Zorg en Welzijn. (in Dutch)

Does the corona crisis break through the traditional division of roles?

As many women are working in vital professions, nowadays many men are taking care of the children. How will this impact the traditional division of the family roles in Dutch families? The experiences of lower and higher educated fathers in this period will most likely be very different, expects family sociologist Renske Keizer in Trouw. (in Dutch)

More domestic violence?

Because of the coronavirus, family members are now living much more in each other's pockets. What does it mean when you are in a situation with domestic violence right now? NEMO Kennislink asks Majone Steketee, professor of intergenerational transmission of domestic violence. (in Dutch)

Positive sides of the corona crisis

"The coronacrisis is helping to change the world" states Professor Jan Rotmans (DRIFT) in an interview in AD. (in Dutch)

Study survival guide during corona

How can you prevent burning out while studying from home? Dr. Martine Baars discusses three different cases of typical issues for students in Erasmus Magazine

How to make working from home more attractive

Many people in the Netherlands are now working from home. How can one make working from home just that little bit more attractive? In Week van NU, a podcast of NU.nl, professor Laura den Dulk, specialised in work-life balance, shares her tips. (in Dutch)

How do you react to an unprecedented global epidemic?

PhD student in psychology Zhiqi Xu, an expert in the field of risky behaviour, explains in Erasmus Magazine that four types of people can be distinguished in this crisis.

Academics vital professions?

Sociologists Willem SchinkelJess Bier and Rogier van Reekum argue for a different approach to the COVID-19 crisis in university education on ScienceGuide. (in Dutch)

Tips for effective communication with teenagers

All over the world, communication professionals are facing the challenge of informing teenagers about the COVID-19 pandemic, and to explain the policy measures, and promote the behaviors that should flatten the curve. Prof. dr. Moniek Buijzen and the Dutch Young Consumers Network provide 10 science-based guidelines for effective communication with teens on BiteScience.

Saving the market?

Why does the community have to save the market now that economic bad times are approaching? This is what Willem Schinkel, professor of Social Theory asks himself in NRC. (in Dutch)

The role of the teacher

All schools in the Netherlands are closed until at least April 28. "It's an opportunity to take a closer look at the role of education and the teacher," says educational scientist Brian Godor at RTV Rijnmond. (in Dutch)

Society after corona: call for reflection and co-creation

Prof. Derk Loorbach (Drift) thinks that it is of importance in this moment of upheaval to think and speak about the society and economy long after corona, in DRIFT. (in Dutch)

Social isolation

Alissa van Zijl, PhD candidate of the Department of Public Administration and Sociology writes in HR Praktijk that the social function of work is still too often underestimated. Van Zijl argues that this is the time to create awareness for this social function. (in Dutch)