Communicating a Pandemic
Crisis Management and Covid-19 in the Nordic Countries
This edited volume compares experiences of how the Covid-19 pandemic was communicated in the Nordic countries – Denmark, Finland, Iceland, Norway, and Sweden. The Nordic countries are often discussed in terms of similarities concerning an extensive welfare system, economic policies, media systems, and high levels of trust in societal actors. However, in the wake of a global pandemic, the countries’ coping strategies varied, creating certain question marks on the existence of a “Nordic model”.
The chapters give a broad overview of crisis communication in the Nordic countries during the first year of the Covid-19 pandemic by combining organisational and societal theoretical perspectives and encompassing crisis response from governments, public health authorities, lobbyists, corporations, news media, and citizens. The results show several similarities, such as political and governmental responses highlighting solidarity and the need for exceptional measures, as expressed in press conferences, social media posts, information campaigns, and speeches. The media coverage relied on experts and was mainly informative, with few critical investigations during the initial phases. Moreover, surveys and interviews show the importance of news media for citizens’ coping strategies, but also that citizens mostly trusted both politicians and health authorities during the crisis.
This book is of interest to all who are looking to understand societal crisis management on a comprehensive level. The volume contains chapters from leading experts from all the Nordic countries and is edited by a team with complementary expertise on crisis communication, political communication, and journalism, consisting of Bengt Johansson, Øyvind Ihlen, Jenny Lindholm, and Mark Blach-Ørsten.