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Title: Strategic uses of Facebook in Zika outbreak communication : implications for the crisis and emergency risk communication model
Authors: Lu, Jiahui
Sheldenkar, Anita
Lwin, May Oo
Schulz, Peter J.
Keywords: Zika
DRNTU::Social sciences::Psychology
Issue Date: 2018
Source: Lwin, M. O., Lu, J., Sheldenkar, A., & Schulz, P. J. (2018). Strategic uses of Facebook in Zika outbreak communication : implications for the crisis and emergency risk communication model. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 15(9), 1974-. doi:10.3390/ijerph15091974
Series/Report no.: International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Abstract: While social media has been increasingly used for communication of infectious disease outbreaks, little is known about how social media can improve strategic communication across various stages of the health crisis. The Crisis and Emergency Risk Communication Model (Reynolds & Seeger, 2005; CERC) outlines strategies across different crisis phases and can guide crisis communication on social media. This research therefore investigates how social media can be utilized to implement and adapt the CERC model, by examining the strategic uses of Facebook in communicating the recent Zika epidemic by health authorities in Singapore. Zika-related Facebook posts of three main Singapore health agencies published within the one year period from January 2016 to December 2016 were thematically analysed. Results suggest that Facebook was used to communicate the crisis strategically, which supported and added to the CERC model. Novel uses of Facebook for outbreak communication were demonstrated, including promoting public common responsibility for disease prevention and expressing regards to the public for cooperation. Results also suggested that preparedness messages might be the most effective, as they produced a great level of public engagement. The adaptability of the CERC model in social media contexts to improve crisis communication is discussed.
ISSN: 1661-7827
DOI: 10.3390/ijerph15091974
Rights: © 2018 The Author(s). Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland. This article is an open access article distributed under the terms and conditions of the Creative Commons Attribution (CC BY) license (
Fulltext Permission: open
Fulltext Availability: With Fulltext
Appears in Collections:WKWSCI Journal Articles

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