Communication in a pandemic: Concerns of agricultural and natural resources opinion leaders during early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic




crisis communication, diffusion of innovations, survey


During the early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic (March-April 2020), opinion leaders in agriculture and natural resources (ANR) were asked to participate in a survey about the impacts of the crisis on the ANR industry specifically about their concerns related to communication, economics, level of preparedness, and health during this crisis. Of the 225 ANR leaders who participated, the majority were concerned that members of the public were sharing inaccurate information about COVID-19; others they come into contact with were not taking appropriate measures to avoid contracting COVID-19; about the impact of COVID-19 on the U.S. economy, their state’s economy, and the global economy; and other countries’ level of preparedness to deal with COVID-19. ANR leaders were consistently the most concerned about items that were outside of their direct sphere of influence. Implications from this work are that ANR leadership programs should incorporate programing to help ANR leaders understand how to be influential during a crisis at a national and international level. For statewide ANR leadership programs, it is recommended to include programming sessions related to identifying and sharing credible information and enabling and inspiring those in their circle of influence to do the same.


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How to Cite

Baker, L., Chiarelli, C., Rampold, S., McLeod-Morin, A., & Lindsey, A. (2021). Communication in a pandemic: Concerns of agricultural and natural resources opinion leaders during early stages of the COVID-19 pandemic. Advancements in Agricultural Development, 2(3), 72–82.




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