Explaining Vaccine Hesitancy

MOSAIC Data Brief – A collaboration between SSRS, Georgetown University, and the University of Michigan

MOSAIC (Measuring Online Social Attitudes and Information Collaborative) is a collaboration between SSRS, Georgetown University, and the University of Michigan. This collaboration will focus on understanding how to leverage survey data and social media data to better capture public opinion in reliable, valid, and scientifically rigorous ways. This data brief series is intended to share public opinion results to inform researchers and decision makers with information about attitudes in the United States related to different aspects of the COVID-19 pandemic. Data briefs will utilize open-ended survey responses, social media posts, and/or both in order to gain different perspectives on public attitudes.
In this data brief, we describe results from a nationally representative survey where we explicitly asked Americans why they had not gotten the vaccine and examined their answers.  We also compare the results to findings from another recent survey in an effort to understand whether the same story emerges across multiple methods.  In a survey conducted from late April until early June, we asked people who were not planning on getting the vaccine the following open-ended question: “What are the main reasons you would not get a coronavirus vaccine?” We received a range of responses that we categorized using topic modeling (see Methodology section for more information).