Application of the Heuristic-Systematic Model to Chronic wasting Disease Risk perceptions

Kyle Smith, Adam C. Landon, Sue Schroeder, Leslie E. McInenly

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The heuristic-systematic model (HSM) suggests that when presented with a choice, individuals will use either heuristic or systematic processing modes to arrive at a judgment. In this paper, we evaluate the HSM model in the context of hunter perceptions toward chronic wasting disease (CWD), a neurological disease found in members of the family Cervidae that threatens the health of cervid populations and the flow of benefits humans derive from them. Data were obtained from surveys of hunters who harvested inside (N = 1500) and outside (N = 3500) of Disease Management Areas (DMAs) across the state of Minnesota with an overall response rate of ∼33%. Results suggested that self-efficacy and information sufficiency were associated with heuristic processing, while motivation was associated with systematic processing. Heuristic processing was associated with lower levels of perceived risk than systematic processing. Our results have implications for the communication efforts related to CWD management and engagement with the public.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)696-714
Number of pages19
JournalSociety and Natural Resources
Issue number6
StatePublished - 2023

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This work was funded by the Minnesota Department of Natural Resource, and Federal Aid in Wildlife Restoration W-730-R-3. We would like to thank Dr. David C. Fulton and Dr. Barbara Keller for their contributions throughout the research process. The survey described in this report was organized and implemented by the University of Minnesota. At the time of publication, data were not publicly available from the MNDNR and questions about data availability should be directed to Adam Landon (email: at the MNDNR.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2023 Taylor & Francis Group, LLC.


  • Dual processing model
  • information processing
  • risk perceptions
  • wildlife disease
  • wildlife management


Dive into the research topics of 'Application of the Heuristic-Systematic Model to Chronic wasting Disease Risk perceptions'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this