Factors affecting Chinese people’s intention to adopt the individual dining style

Jue Huang, Jing Chu, Xialing Zhao

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Purpose: In light of the threat posed by the COVID-19 pandemic, Chinese authorities have called for the adoption of the individual dining style (IDS) as a preventive measure for the pandemic and a new norm for civilized code of conduct. Accordingly, this study aims to investigate the factors influencing the Chinese people’s intention to adopt the IDS. Design/methodology/approach: The authors applied the capability, opportunity and motivation model of behavior (COM-B) and identified potential predictors influencing the intention to adopt the IDS through a review of the literature. Data were collected through an online survey, and structural equation modeling was applied to test the hypotheses. Findings: The results indicated that the most influential predictors were subjective norm, social norm, perceived benefit and past behavior, while the other predictors (including breaking habits, communal dining culture, perceived behavioral control, perceived health risk and social risk) had insignificant effects on the intention to adopt IDS. Practical implications: First, educational public health messages should communicate the benefits of IDS. Second, persuasive public communication should focus on how people are implementing the target behavior rather than drawing attention to a minority who are disregarding it. Moreover, given the highly significant effects of subjective norm, public health campaigns should emphasize that adoption of the desired behavior expresses care for significant others. Originality/value: The findings advance understanding of an underexplored topic, namely, how deeply ingrained ways of dining may be transformed in the current context. Applying the COM-B, the authors tested multiple variables to explain the intention to adopt IDS. The results suggest that some social influences (subjective norm and social norm) and reflective cognitive processes (perceived benefit) had the greatest impacts on behavior intentions. Moreover, the results indicate that threat of COVID-19 may not prompt people to change their dining styles. However, the benefits of IDS to prevent the spread of infectious diseases could lead to its wider adoption.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4708-4728
Number of pages21
JournalInternational Journal of Contemporary Hospitality Management
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - Nov 1 2022


  • COM-B model
  • COVID-19
  • Communal dining culture
  • Food culture
  • Individual dining style
  • Risk perception

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Tourism, Leisure and Hospitality Management


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