Scientific Programme
Year 2021
October 2021


Abstract Title
The preferences and trade-offs of social interactions, and incentives, and being traced by a digital contact tracing tool in the uptake of “TraceTogether” post-Circuit Breaker in Singapore



Tan Tock Seng Hospital1, National Centre for Infectious Diseases2

Background & Hypothesis

Digital contact tracing (DCT) tools can improve contact tracing capabilities during the COVID-19 pandemic. We assessed the preferences and trade-offs between social interactions, incentives, and being traced by a DCT tool in the uptake of “TraceTogether” app/token post COVID-19 circuit breaker in Singapore.


We conducted a discrete choice experiment (DCE) among visitors of two busiest clinics in Tan Tock Seng Hospital, July 2020 – February 2021. The questionnaire included four choice sets with three attributes (Social interactions; Traced by a DCT tool; Incentives to use a DCT tool) and two levels each. The final dataset comprised 3839 respondents after dropping 53 “irrational” responses. Panel fixed conditional logit model was used for DCE analysis.


Respondents were willing to trade being traced by a DCT tool for both social interactions and incentives. However, they were unwilling to trade “Social interactions” for “Incentives”.  Males and younger adults derived the highest satisfaction from having social interactions and incentives despite being traced by a DCT tool compared with females and older adults (Satisfaction scores [30M:2.22; 70M:1.72; 30F:1.52; 70F:1.03]). Among proponents of monetary incentives, the preferred median value for a month’s usage of a DCT tool were S$10 and S$50 for subsidies and lucky draw, respectively.

Discussion & Conclusion

Social interactions are highly valued by the population, who are willing to trade them for being traced by a DCT tool during the COVID-19 pandemic. Although a small amount of monetary incentive is sufficient to increase the satisfaction of using a DCT tool, incentives alone may not increase its uptake.