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Adoption of telework and e-learning during Covid-19 lockdown

This paper studies: a) the impact of Covid-19 lockdown measures on the adoption of teleworking and e-learning, and b) its socioeconomic determinants. Using real-time data on Google search Trends aggregated at the province level in Italy, I study how different provinces reacted to the implementation of local and national confinement rules. More specifically, I estimate the province-specific changes in telework and e-learning related searches, before and after lockdown. To measure the lockdown, I use two different alternatives: the dates of the published law-decrees announcing the quarantine measures, and, as robustness, the Mobility Reports published by Google. Then, I provide evidence on which socioeconomic characteristics of each province determine the different levels and speeds of adjustment. The contributions of this paper are threefold: 1) To quickly identify the magnitude and sources of adoption inequalities should be useful for policymakers to tackle the most urgent problems in terms of productivity and knowledge acquisition, which are crucial to mitigate the next economic crisis; 2) To provide benchmarks for future comparisons with representative and established surveys that include telework and e-learning measures; 3) To explain how the Mobility Reports by Google can provide additional relevant information in research related to Covid-19.

Lead investigator:

Marta C Lopes

Affiliation:

European University Institute

Primary topic:

Attitudes, media & governance

Secondary topic:

Jobs, work, pay & benefits

Region of data collection:

Europe

Country of data collection

Italy

Status of data collection

Complete

Type of data being collected:

Publicly available

Unit of real-time data collection

Region/State

Start date

1/2019

End date

5/2020

Frequency

Daily