Burson-Marsteller's Depression Awareness Campaign in Thailand

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Discussion Questions

1. How significant is the problem of suicide in Thailand? In order to answer this question consider the following : a. What is the population of Thailand?
b. Is 1451 suicides a high rate for a country that size?
c. What is the suicide rate in other countries? Compare Thailand’s suicide rate to that in United States and in Sweden.

Answer

a. 69,518,555 – 2011 , Source: World Bank
b. For a 69 mil people living in Thailand, It is not consider a high suicide rate in that country. c.
* Sweden has the highest suicide rate in the world.  Denmark and Sweden that consistently score high on measures of happiness and life satisfaction also have relatively high suicide rates. Some social scientists speculate that the trends are probably unrelated and can be explained by regional factors like dark winters or cultural differences regarding suicide. (35th place) - United States – 12.0 (Per Year) (34th place)

- Thailand, Least suicide rates if to compare with Sweden and United States. (57th place)

5. How are products that are thought of as a taboo sold or describe in the United States? Consider? For eg: Viagra and Condoms. a. Will the same tools work for disseminating information about a taboo subject in Thailand?

b. How would you decide how such techniques would be received in Thailand?

Answer

a. In Thailand society, speaking about one’s sense of inner turmoil (disturbances) or emotional problems is considered taboo. A typical Thai would never admit if he or she had experienced depression because fear of not being accepted by society. That’s why they prefer going to temples because it is the easiest way out and they don’t have to reveal their fear and frustrations. Other than temples, they’ll go to local faith healers or fortunetellers who use superstition as their medium for healing. The last thing they’ll do is to see a doctor. Unlike in U.S, The people there are...
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