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ICA Top Paper Profile: Lee & Costello

Eunsung Lee – first author

In our lead up to #ICA24, we are providing information about papers that received Top Paper awards from the Communication Science and Biology (CSaB) Interest Group. Each paper received exceptionally high scores from reviewers. These papers reflect outstanding scholarship in CSaB. Today’s Top Paper features Doctoral student Eunsung Lee as first author of the paper “The effects of cigarette warning labels’ message framings and self-affirmation on smokers: a fNIRS study.” Be sure to check out the paper at #ICA24

CSaB: In a few short sentences, what is your study about?

This study examined the effects of message framings (gain- vs. loss-framing) and self-affirmation on discouraging smoking among Asian smokers. In doing so, we analyzed and compared the brain activities from functional near-infrared spectroscopy (fNIRS) and self-reported data. Findings showed that self-affirmation significantly increased message effectiveness, whereas message framings made no discernible differences. One of the unexpected findings was that the combination of self-affirmation and gain-framing emerged as the most effective communication approach in encouraging the target population to adopt desired behaviors. Also, we found the disparity between self-reported data and fNIRS data.

CSaB: How did you come up with the idea for this line of research?

As a non-smoker, I could never understand why people still choose to smoke while holding a cigarette package with horrifying images. At first, I thought it was because of ineffective anti-smoking campaign messages, but academic findings proved otherwise. I wondered what made this disparity. That’s why I decided to analyze neural responses alongside self-reported data, because it’s hard to fake brain activities.

CSaB: Anything else you would like to add?

I’m thrilled to be part of ICA 2024! This marks my debut at a conference of this scale, so I’m feeling a mix of excitement and nerves. Can’t wait to dive in and learn from other fellow researchers!

CSaB: Tell us more about the team!

I am a Doctoral student in the Department of Media and Communications at Sungkyunkwan University. My recent research interests revolve around psychological and interpersonal processes in AI and new media technology. I also study how an individual makes sense of emerging communication technologies and computer-mediated communication, with an emphasis on quantitative methodologies.

My coauthor, Joseph Francis Costello, received his Ph.D in Business School at Sungkyunkwan University and is currently a post-doc at the Chinese University of Hong Kong. He has been actively engaged in several serious studies about platform-based decision support systems, internet security, neuroscience-based decision-making, big data analytics using AI methods, etc. He has published his work in outlets such as Decision Support Systems, Journal of Business Research, Frontiers in Psychology, to name a few. 

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