Top psychologist can’t draw the obvious conclusion about better compliance in Scotland

On BBC Politics Scotland this morning, Professor Stephen Reicher was asked:

Is (sic) there any data that is (sic) specific to Scotland on the self isolation figures? And do you think governments as a whole need to be doing a lot more to help people to comply with self-isolation?

He didn’t know of any data that are specific to Scotland and that are evidence of greater compliance but I do:

Profs Reicher, Bauld and Sridhar have been telling us for months that the Scottish Government has been better at communicating its decisions and that better communication leads to greater confidence in the measures implemented but they have baulked at completing the circle.

The infection level in Scotland throughout the pandemic has been around half of that in England. It’s currently less than half. That’s a big difference indicating millions behaving differently.

What could be causing that level of difference in infection levels? Isn’t a difference in the rate of compliance, the obvious cause? What else could it be? Weather, diet, demography….things are not that much different here.

So, better communication by leaders leads to greater confidence in their actions and that leads to greater willingness to comply with their policies and that leads to lower infection levels? Simple?

None of the three, above will say this despite all three having long been willing to praise the Scottish Government’s input. To be fair, recently, Professor Bauld has been tweeting the actual infection data shunned by our MSM.

Are they worried it all seems a bit too ‘ethnic’ to be saying Scots are complying more with pandemic measures?

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8 thoughts on “Top psychologist can’t draw the obvious conclusion about better compliance in Scotland

  1. Pathetic but that of course is the precise reason why he was invited and suits the BBC (Scotland is no different agenda) perfectly. Perhaps the only Prof that presumably has been closely monitoring the Pandemic and its effects on the populace that cannot find any correlation. Desperate stuff and it doesn’t say much for his expertise, intellect or studies into this.

    Liked by 3 people

  2. We’re overwhelmed with statistics these days, but do NHS Scotland Test & Protect figures versus UK Test & Trace have any clues?

    If Test & Protect is still reaching more contacts faster that’s going to have a big effect on transmission rates.

    Another big point of difference is non-essential workplaces. Scot Gov has never deviated from work at home, where as lots of people I know in England have been back in their offices (at least some of the time) for months.

    Liked by 4 people

  3. It’s like the narrative of the colonial press.
    Scotland is ahead of the pack, but according to them, we are:-
    “Behind the curve”.
    Make sense of that– ahead of the pack, but behind the curve.

    Apparently this nonsense comes from a UK Minister.
    Jack-a-nory Jack, perhaps?

    Liked by 2 people

  4. To be honest I’ve always thought Prof Riecher is one of the good guys, heard him talking up the FM’s messaging many times. Frequently heard him criticising the press’s approach to Covid, in fact he made a major point of this today.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I agree, Clydebuilt. Over a many months and in many interviews, IMHO Professor Reicher has been informative and balanced.

      It must be hard to get the tone and the content spot on every topic, in every interview, to every question and also to get it ‘right’ for every listener in every interest group.

      I’d urge being quick to praise these ‘experts’ but slow to be too condemnatory based on one off – what we might consider as – ‘lapses’.

      This site is of course right to highlight shortcomings in this current contribution from Professor Reicher and to back this up with evidence to justify a different point of view. However, for me some of the btl comment – absent evidence – is way over the top in its accusations.


  5. Is it not the case that people, workers in particular having to self isolate can apply for a grant from the ScotGov to tide them over? There is help there, which may also explain why people will comply with what is necessary to reduce infection rates across the board.

    Scotland just cannot be seen to be doing any better in any way at all, on any level, on any issue. I had to tell a friend in England who sent me a ’38 degrees’ petition to ‘extend the housing evictions ban’, which of course has been done already in Scotland, the ban stands until end of March, not so in England. Try telling people to make sure their petitions are not misleading and they don’t like it! 38 degrees lost my support a while back when they had a huge petition against the ScotGov’s MOD for killing whales!! Thousands signed it, in the belief that Scotland has an MOD, and that the ScotGov were responsible for killing sea life in Scottish waters. There was another one by them against the ScotGov, (again relating to a reserved power to London EngGov), very misleading, they are part of the problem for misleading people and far as I know they do not amend or remove false petitions.

    The housing eviction ban ends tomorrow in England.


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