Questions and answers about
the UK economy.

The welfare effect on households of social isolation

This project studies the welfare effects of social isolation due to the Covid-19 outbreak. In particular, we are interested in measuring the potential negative welfare effects on household of having to be in quarantine with limited possibilities to be outdoors and with limited social contacts. We do this with a survey to a representative sample of the Swedish population. In the survey, 1600 respondents are asked to state whether or not they would be willing to participate in a voluntary self-isolation government program with the aim of reducing the speed of the spread of the Covid-19 virus. In order to measure the welfare effects of different aspects of social isolation we vary, within subject, three characteristics of the program: number of weeks in isolation, number of hours allowed to be outside of the home and a monetary compensation. In addition, we vary between subjects the extent to which society—e.g., restaurants, parks and non-essential stores—is operating. The experimental design allows us to measure the welfare effects of participating in the program, expressed as required minimum level of compensation, and of the various characteristics of the program. In addition, we collect a set of individual characteristics and preferences such as risk, time and social preferences in order to explore the heterogeneity of the responses.

Lead investigator:

Ola Andersson


Uppsala University

Primary topic:

Attitudes, media & governance

Secondary topic:

Health, physical & mental

Region of data collection:


Country of data collection


Type of data being collected:

Online survey

Unit of real-time data collection