Prof. Aikaterini Fotopoulou (University College London, UK), Dr. Louise P. Kirsch (Sorbonne Université, France), Mariana von Mohr (University of London, UK): Social Touch in times of social distancing

In this unique situation of pandemia, where most individuals experience social isolation, psychological distress and social pain are a common state. While previous work suggests that touch is essential to buffer feelings of social isolation and rejection, interpersonal touch experience has been affected due to social distancing policies to control the spread of COVID-19.

Prof. Elena V. Leonova (Kaluga State University, Russia): Distance Learning in Russia during the Pandemic: Parents and Children

How parents and children cope with stress in isolation, distance work of parents and distance learning of children simultaneously? We tried to identify stress factors and factors of conflict communication (parents-children, parents-teacher) during lockdown and distant learning/work. Current experience of mass distance school learning in Russia during COVID-19 pandemic leads to understanding of how to improve education after the pandemic.

Dr. Alexander English (Shanghai Intercultural Institute, Shanghai International Studies University, China): Facemasks and Lockdowns: A move toward a new global norm?

COVID -19 struck the world by surprise. We simply underestimated this virus. As the world now embraces new social norms like mask policies, temperature checks and social distancing, I aim to present two early studies that show how humans have adapted to this new “post-COVID” world. In this talk, I’ll provide a brief overview of our early findings and how they can explain human behavior and a move to a new global norm.

Prof. Gerit Pfuhl (UiT The Arctic University of Norway): Perceived efficacy, mental health and paranoia during the COVID-19 outbreak: insights from a cross-national survey

The COVID-19 pandemic drastically changed our social life habits as governments employed harsh restrictions to reduce the spread of the virus. Though physical distancing and related countermeasures could impact mental health. In a pre-registered online survey (longitudinal), we assessed how effective a range of countermeasures were perceived, how severely they affected daily life, general distress and paranoia during the early phase of the outbreak in Brazil, Colombia, Germany, Israel, Norway and US. In follow-up surveys we measured protective and risk factors for mental health.

Joseph Heffner (Brown University, Providence, USA): Emotional mechanisms support prosocial, but not threat, appeals regarding COVID-19

The COVID-19 pandemic may be one of the greatest modern societal challenges that requires widespread collective action and cooperation. While a handful of actions can help reduce pathogen transmission, one critical behavior is to self-isolate. Public health messages often use persuasive language to change attitudes and behaviors, which can evoke a wide range of negative and positive emotional responses.

Prof. Bruno Arpino (University of Firenze, Italy): Physically distant but socially close? Intergenerational relationships and mental health during the COVID-19 pandemic

With the goal of slowing down the spread of the Sars-CoV-2 virus, restrictions to physical contacts have been taken in many countries. We aim at examining to what extent non-physical relationships (via phone, social media, etc.) have compensated the reduction in physical interactions. In particular, we focus on intergenerational relationships among people aged 50+.

Dr. Stephanie Godleski, Dr. Ammina Kothari (Rochester Institute of Technology, USA): Young adults use of social media for mental health support during COVID-19 pandemic

Social media play an important role in young adults’ lives, who use various platforms for social connectedness and well-being support. This study explores social media use by teenagers and young adults during the COVID-19 pandemic and their willingness to seek mental health assistance on social media and the effect on their well-being.