Assessing conspiracist beliefs across societies: Validation of the Serbian adaptation of the Generic Conspiracist Beliefs Scale (GCBS)

Bojana M. Dinić*, Neil Dagnall, Andrew Denovan, Anamarija Došenović, Nick Neave

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Citation (Scopus)

Abstract

Initial validation of the Generic Conspiracist Beliefs Scale (GCBS) identified five correlated factors: Government Malfeasance, Malevolent Global Conspiracies, Extraterrestrial Cover‐up, Personal Well‐being and Control of Information. Despite replications of this structure, ensuing research, mostly using translated versions of the GCBS (i.e., Persian and Japanese), has reported factorial alternatives. Concomitantly, researchers postulated that belief in conspiracies was higher in historically troubled societies (e.g., Serbia). To further assess the cultural stability of the five correlated factor solution and test the assumption that GCBS scores are affected by social‐political instability, a Serbian adaptation of the GCBS was assessed alongside the standard English language version. Data were collected from Serbian (n = 259, 44.40% males) and UK samples (n = 402, 52.25% males). Within samples, confirmatory factor analysis replicated the five‐factor solution. Additionally, national and gender invariance was confirmed. National comparisons (Serbia vs. UK) revealed that the Serbian sample scored higher on Government Malfeasance, Malevolent Global Conspiracies, Personal Well‐being and Control of Information, whereas the UK sample scored higher on Extraterrestrial Cover‐up. There were no gender differences on GCBS factors. Findings indicated that while the Serbian GCBS was interpreted similarly to the GCBS, societal factors influenced endorsement of belief facets.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)322-330
Number of pages9
JournalInternational Journal of Psychology
Volume59
Issue number2
Early online date10 Nov 2023
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - 1 Apr 2024

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