During the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic, Dutch public opinion was largely characterized by a more positive outlook on society and politics. We give explanations for this rather positive spirit based on literature on earlier crises and we outline the changes in public opinion between January and April 2020 (using the Citizens' Outlooks Barometer). We will complement this quantitative analysis by ana-lysing several open-ended questions to enhance our knowledge on the individual’s perceptions, atti-tudes and judgments about politics and society at the beginning of the pandemic. Our qualitative data analysis shows that the boost in political trust is driven by a specific appreciation of proceedings dur-ing the crisis and not by future expectations. But moreover, while this political ‘rally-round-the-flag’ phenomenon became centre stage of the crisis literature, we actually found that this is less salient than the societal outlook during a crisis: many citizens also express a reappraisal of society.
|Translated title of the contribution||More than a boost in political trust: Dutch public opinion during the first wave of the COVID-19 pandemic|
|Journal||Mens en Maatschappij|
|Publication status||Published - 2021|