Global study to analyse social distancing effect on mental wellbeing and behaviour

first_imgWhen an individual opens the survey link, it shows that the study is available in 12 languages. The stated goal of the study is to conduct research on the “behavioural changes affecting our daily lives in relation to the coronavirus (COVID-19) outbreak.”  Dr Tuncgenc spoke about how understanding the effects of a lack of social relationships was a reason for initiating this study: “The pandemic required people to change their daily life in drastic ways. As a very social species, we humans are drawn into close relationships, especially when things go awry. Understanding what motivates people to make such drastic lifestyle changes and how it affects their social lives was the main reason why I initiated this study. “We have several hypotheses about this extremely complex situation. One of our key expectations is that behaviour change will occur as a result of what others in our close relationships do. Moreover, we’re expecting that although distancing will affect people’s well-being negatively, social support and closeness with one’s country may act as buffers to alleviate these negative effects. These questions have direct relevance to policymakers for deciding how to implement such measures as “social distancing” and for assessing its impact on people’s health.” As the COVID-19 pandemic is creating new universal norms, a new global study aims to analyse the psychological effects of social distancing on citizens around the world. The study is being led by Dr Bahar Tuncgenc, a Doctor and Research Fellow at the University of Nottingham School of Psychology. The study consists of a group of researchers from all over the world, including the University of Oxford.  Dr Tuncgenc told Cherwell: “We do not focus on any group in particular – anyone can take part in our study! We’re looking for hundreds of people from each one of our target countries including the UK, USA, Australia, Germany, Italy, Iran, India and more … The readers can see the full range of available languages on our website. As with all research tackling big questions, this one is a truly collaborative effort between 5 universities led by the University of Nottingham.” The survey will track respondents’ feelings and experiences of social distancing over a three-month period. The aim of the study is to better understand what makes people adhere to social distancing practices and how these practices affect the mood of participants.  “Human beings are an incredibly social species,” said Dr Martha Newson, who is a researcher on the study from the University of Oxford School of Anthropology. “The effects of isolation could lead to severe, lasting effects on wellbeing and mental health.”last_img read more


U.S. Forces Show Reach In Crises Response

first_img The U.S. military demonstrated its global reach and effectiveness in the past month of crises, Pentagon Press Secretary Geoff Morrell said. The U.S. military is probably the only organization in the world that could have handled the demands of providing assistance to the people of Japan in the wake of the earthquake and tsunami while also preventing a massacre in Benghazi, Libya. The earthquake struck off Japan’s northern coast on March 11. The tsunami followed soon after. “From the moment the earthquake struck … American military forces were ready to respond with whatever assistance was needed by Japan, our close friend and stalwart ally,” Morrell told reporters at the Pentagon. So far, more than 20,000 U.S. military personnel, about 140 aircraft and more than 20 U.S. ships have provided humanitarian assistance, and supported disaster relief and consequence management efforts in Japan. A week later, U.S. service members joined an international coalition to prevent a humanitarian crisis in Libya that could have destabilized nascent democratic movements in neighboring Egypt and Tunisia. Operation Odyssey Dawn began with an American-led strike on Libyan strongman Moammar Gadhafi’s military, designed to prevent him from killing large numbers of Libyan civilians in Benghazi and sparking a refugee crisis. “All told, since operations began on March the 19th, the U.S. has flown approximately 1,600 sorties, which includes more than 600 strike missions,” Morrell said of U.S. military efforts in Libya. “The U.S. strike mission ended yesterday evening …, but we will continue flying support missions under NATO leadership, and we will remain on alert for emergency strike missions, if requested by NATO.” Meanwhile, about 100,000 American troops are fighting a war against extremism in Afghanistan. Another 46,000 are deployed to Iraq, training Iraqi security forces. “That we have been able to respond to these crises without missing a beat in either of those efforts is a testament to the strength and versatility of our forces and, most of all, to the men and women in uniform who are prepared to take on any mission assigned to them,” Morrell said. By Dialogo April 07, 2011last_img read more


Trojans return north to face Stanford

first_imgLast month, the No. 1 USC men’s water polo team upended Stanford 10-9 in an overtime thriller in the semifinals of the NorCal tournament.Leader of the pack · Junior driver Nikola Vavic tops the USC men’s water polo team in scoring this season with a total of 43 goals. – Chris Roman | Daily TrojanFast forward three weeks later and the Trojans (14-0, 1-0) return to Palo Alto, Calif. on Saturday, looking to notch another win over the No. 4 Cardinal — with this month’s contest counting toward the Mountain Pacific Sports Federation standings.The conference rivals square off at the Avery Aquatic Center at 9 a.m. in a televised game on the Pac-12 Network.This time, though, the Trojans are hoping it isn’t as close.“We allowed Stanford to get back into the game more than once,” said USC coach Jovan Vavic. “This time, we need to be more defensively aware and give no open looks to their deadly outside shooters.”USC topped No. 2 UC Santa Barbara 14-5 to earn the SoCal tournament title last Sunday and the team hopes to use its strong performance to continue its double-digit winning streak come Saturday against Stanford (6-2, 0-0).“We basically shut down every team we played early,” said junior driver Nikola Vavic, who finished with a career-high six goals in the championship game win over the Gauchos.Stanford, as well, poses a similar threat.“They’re strong and probably bigger than us, but if we can take them out early then we’ll be good,” Nikola Vavic said.The Trojans are on a roll right now, but the current situation is all too familiar to some of the team’s veterans.“We’ve been in this situation in seasons past, where we’re in a good situation in the rankings and with our record,” senior driver Michael Rosenthal said. “Two years ago, we lost to Stanford right after [winning] the SoCal tournament. We don’t want another letdown.”In 2010, the Trojans were 15-0 after a SoCal tournament win and heading to Palo Alto, but they had their worst offensive output of the season in a 5-3 loss to the Cardinal, and lost at home to California the weekend after.After playing five games this past weekend, Jovan Vavic and the coaching staff are taking measures to keep the team physically ready for the early start on Saturday.Though the bulk of the conference slate is beginning, the schedule does have its advantages.In five of the last seven weeks of the season, the Trojans only play one game per week, allowing for more rest in comparison to the packed-tournament schedules.While the Trojans have yet to lose, their consensus is that there is still room to improve.“Our counter-attack, our time-out, and our 6-on-5s need a lot more repetition and practice for us to really fine-tune them,” Rosenthal said. “By the end of the season, hopefully we’ll be more of a well-oiled machine.”last_img read more