COVID-19 cases correlate with greater acceptance coping in flexible cultures: A cross-cultural study in 26 countries

Xiaoyu Zhou, Alexander Scott English*, Steve J. Kulich, Lu Zheng, Tales Alves, Sibele D. Aquino, Sanja Batić Očovaj, Hacer Belen, Ashley Biddle, Chinun Boonroungrut, Adolfo Fabricio Licoa Campos, Rita Castro, Cicilia Chettiar, Phatthanakit Chobthamkit, Richard G. Cowden, Dmitrii Dubrov, Mehrdad F. Falavarjani, Tahir Farid, Nicolas Geeraert, Dmitry GrigoryevHendrik Gunawan, Joep Hofhuis, Kazi Nur Hossain, Kaiyue Huang, Huang Jiang, Veljko Jovanović, Nuannut Khieowan, Monika Klimek-Tulwin, Natasza Kosakowska-Berezecka, Jonas R. Kunst, Katharina Lefringhausen, Xiaoyuan Li, Samuel Lins, Sadia Malik, Fridanna Maricchiolo, Laura Martínez-Buelvas, Elma Medosevic-Korjenic, Benjamin H. Nam, Ginés Navarro-Carrillo, Jose Candido Pereira Neto, Felipe Novaes, Eliza Oliver, Daniele Paolini, Joonha Park, Dušana Šakan, Miriam Schwarzenthal, Qian Sun, Thomas Talhelm, Robert Thomson, Arun Tipandjan, Rongtian Tong, Jorge Torres-Marín, Shuang Wang, Liuqing Wei, Victoria Wai Lan Yeung, Mahdi Yousefi, Ananta Yudiarso, Masaki Yuki, Xinyi Zhang

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)


The current study examines whether the prevalence of COVID-19 cases and cultural flexibility correlate to one's use of acceptance coping across 26 cultures. We analyzed data from 7476 participants worldwide at the start of the first outbreak from March 2020 to June 2020. Results showed that cultural flexibility moderated the relationship between COVID-19 cases and individuals' acceptance coping strategies. Specifically, for cultures with high flexibility, COVID-19 cases correlated with more acceptance coping; for cultures with low flexibility, COVID-19 cases correlated with less acceptance coping. This result demonstrates how participants from flexible cultures can coexist with the realistic challenges and suffering faced during this pandemic.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere12919
JournalSocial and Personality Psychology Compass
Issue number2
Early online date6 Dec 2023
Publication statusPublished - 20 Feb 2024


  • acceptance coping
  • COVID-19 prevalence
  • cultural flexibility

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Social Psychology


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