Call for papers Social Representations of Covid19



Papers on Social Representations

Peer Reviewed Online Journal

Call for papers

Social Representations of Covid19


Guest Editors: 

Dario Paez (University of the Basque Country, Spain),  Juan Antonio Perez (University of Valencia, Spain), Elena Zubieta (University of Buenos Aires, Argentina), Denise Jodelet (Emeritus EHSS, France), Themis Apostolidis (Aix-Marseille Université), Rosa Cabecinhas (University of Minho, Portugal), Brigido Carmargo (LACCOS – UFSC, Brazil)


Current Covid19 pandemic is a phenomenon of interest to social psychology in general and to Social Representations approach in particular. Social representations as a product are the mental models shared in groups, while as a process they are the way in which they are generated and modified through interpersonal and group communication (Perez, 2004). As a theoretical framework, it describes the processes of creation of meaning by which social groups interpret novel events, such as catastrophes or new diseases, which question their world views, like CV19 pandemic (Vala & Castro, 2017). The current confinement of a large part of humanity in their homes due to the coronavirus pandemic is an unusual experience for the vast majority of the population. To understand the set of representations involved in the Covid19 pandemic and to conceptualize the processes by which opinions, attitudes, stereotypes and behaviors are created, it is necessary to analyze the modalities of social communication to which it is giving rise. It is important to reflect on the modes of diffusion, propagation and propaganda communication as they are manifested in the Covid19 pandemic. It is also relevant to examine in the case of Covid19 the anchoring of the representations in past diseases, in groups of other nationalities, unhygienic practices and in groups deviating from the ethos of individualistic self-control (see Smith et al, 2015: Eicher & Bangerter, 2015; Idoiaga et al, 2018 for previous relevant studies on social representations and infectious diseases). It is also important to examine the objectification of the representation of Covid19 in different metaphors, images, and personifications as heroes (doctors, nurses, scientifics), elite villains (pharmaceutical entrepreneurs, ineffective governments), popular villains (neglected person, masses performing panic collective behavior) and victims (the elderly, the poor). To propose explanations and contrast these hypotheses on the socio-political correlates, the dynamics of common-sense beliefs and their relationship with social behavior seems essential. The limitations of the individualistic approaches of social cognition and preconscious automatic processes seem evident to us in the face of the theme of Covid19 (see van Bavel et al, 2020 and Taylor, 2019 for mainstream approaches to pandemics).

In order to reflect on these issues we invite researchers working within the framework of Social Representations to participate in the analysis of Covid19 pandemics. Those who are interested in contributing to this special issue should initially send an abstract of their manuscript (max 300 words), indicating title, name and institutional affiliation of the authors. Please send your submissions to all guest editors for English papers, to  and (Spanish papers), to and (Portuguese papers), to (Italian papers) and to,,and (French papers)  by the 1th of May 2020.

To encourage a wide range of submissions for this special issue, we will accept abstracts (and papers1) to be written in English, French, Italian, Spanish, and Portuguese. We would like to emphasize that the offer of reception of articles in Italian is only valid for this monograph. However, other language submissions should always be accompanied by an English translation of their final version, following the submissions policy of Papers on Social Representations (see The final version of the article (but not the abstract or the first version that will be submitted to peer review) must be sent also in English and according to the criteria defined by the journal.



Eicher, V., & Bangerter, A. (2015). Social representations of infectious diseases. In G. Sammut, E. Andreouli, & G. Gaskell (Eds.), Handbook of social representations (pp. 385‐396). Cambridge: Cambridge University Press

Idoiaga, N., Gil, L & Valencia, J. (2018). Understanding the emergence of infectious diseases: Social representations and mass media. Communication & Society 31(3), 319-330.

Pérez. J. A. (2004). Las representaciones sociales. In D. Páez, I. Fernández, S. Ubillos, & E. Zubieta (Coord.), Psicología social, cultura y educación (pp. 413–442). Madrid: Pearson Prentice Hall.

Smith, N., O´Connor, C. & Joffe, H. (2015). Social Representations of Threatening Phenomena: The Self-Other Thema and Identity Protection. Papers on Social Representations, 24, 2, 1.1-1.23

Taylor, S. (2019). The Psychology of Pandemics. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.

Vala, J., & Castro, P. (2017). Pensamento social e representacoes sociais. In J. Vala & M. B. Monteiro (Eds.), Psicologia social, 10th (pp. 569–600). Lisboa: Fundacao Gulbelkian.

Van Bavel,J et al (2020). Using social and behavioural science to support COVID-19 pandemic response.


1 Authors whose abstracts are accepted will be invited to submit full papers (around 7000 words) for peer review. Papers should be submitted according to Papers on Social Representations submission guidelines (see  All submitted papers will be peer reviewed for publication on the understanding that they have not been previously published elsewhere. Deadline for Special issue submissions:  30 July 2020.