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Current Research

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Economists from around the world are using real time data collection to better understand the impact the Covid-19 crisis is having on families, workers, firms and society, and how policies can help the recovery out of the crisis. Find out more about how these research teams are carrying out their projects, and what their findings are below.

Corona, lockdown, local GDP and Individual well-being: a comparison of regions in New Zealand with machine learning forecasts

We study the impact of local economic prospects on the well-being of individuals in reaction to the Corona lockdown and thereafter. We expect that well-being is positively affected by the economic outlook in the local region, as approximated via AI-b...
Primary Topic: Health, physical & mental
Secondary Topic: Families & households
Lead investigator: Nora Szech

Poverty and Covid-19 in developing countries

In March 2020, shelter-in-place and social-distancing policies have been enforced or recommended all over the world to fight the Covid-19 pandemic. However, strict containment is hardly achievable in low-income countries, as large parts of population...
Primary Topic: Inequality & poverty
Lead investigator: Olivier Bargain

Families under confinement: Covid-19, domestic violence, and alcohol consumption

Evidence suggests that during the Covid-19 lockdown, alcohol consumption has increased and income has gone down among several households in Mexico City. The existing literature relates alcohol consumption and negative income shocks to a greater numbe...
Primary Topic: Crime & policing

Estimating the costs and benefits of mandated business closures in a pandemic

Typical government responses to pandemics involve social distancing measures implemented to curb disease propagation. We evaluate the impact of state-mandated business closures in the context of the Covid-19 crisis in the US. Using state-level variat...
Primary Topic: Business, big & small
Secondary Topic: Prices & interest rates
Lead investigator: Jean-Noel Barrot

Hate crime in time of the Corona

The news of the novel virus first reached the world when the World Health Organisation (WHO) confirmed the first case in China on December 31, 2019. As the danger it posed to the public grew and the virus spread first across China, then to Europe and...
Primary Topic: Crime & policing
Lead investigator: Joel Carr

Trust and compliance to public health policies in time of Covid-19

The Covid-19 crisis has led to fast policy responses all over the world to reduce social interaction and limit contagion. Using Google mobility data at regional level in Europe, we study whether the compliance to containment policies depends on the l...
Lead investigator: Olivier Bargain

“Do governors lead or follow? timing of stay-at-home orders”

I use daily Google search data on the keyword ``Coronavirus" to track early resident interest in the novel Coronavirus pandemic. I ask whether governors are responding to heightened interest (i.e., following) or if their decisions are independen...
Lead investigator: Bryan C. McCannon

Explaining governors’ response to the Covid-19 pandemic in the United States

What is the response of US governors to the Covid-19 pandemic? In this research note, we explore the determinants of implementing stay-at-home orders, focusing on governors’ characteristics. In our most conservative estimate, being a Democratic gov...
Lead investigator: Leonardo Baccini

Restarting the economy while saving lives under Covid-19

We provide, calibrate and test a realistic model of the spread of SARS-Cov-2 in an economy where the population has different age groups and sectors. The model takes into account factors that have proved to be essential in explaining features of the ...
Secondary Topic: Health, physical & mental
Lead investigator: Carlo Favero

Lock-down or let-it-flow: a spatial analysis of Covid-19 on Chinese economy

This paper studies the impacts of the outbreak of the Covid-19 and the lock-down policy on the Chinese economy. Combining the changes of daily migration flow data, industrial outputs data, population census data, and a spatial equilibrium model, we q...
Primary Topic: Recession & recovery
Secondary Topic: Jobs, work, pay & benefits
Lead investigator: Minjie Deng

The Covid-19 pandemic: government vs. community action across the United States

Are lockdown policies effective at inducing physical distancing to counter the spread of VIVID-19? Can less restrictive measures that rely on voluntary community action achieve a similar effect? Using data from 40 million mobile devices, we find that...
Lead investigator: David Van Dijcke

U.S. state Covid-19 stay at home orders: were they driven by scientific, economic, or ideological factors?

What factors affected whether or not a U.S. state governor issued a statewide stay-at-home order in response to the Covid-19 pandemic of early 2020? Once issued, what factors affected the length of this stay-at-home order? Using duration analysis, we...
Secondary Topic: Recession & recovery
Lead investigator: Lea-Rachel Kosnik

Effect of a federal paid sick leave mandate on physical mobility

Physical distancing is a vital non-pharmaceutical strategy to overcome the coronavirus disease 2019 (Covid-19) public health threat. The inability to take paid leave from work that cannot be conducted remotely is a crucial barrier to individuals bein...
Secondary Topic: Health, physical & mental
Lead investigator: Martin Anderson

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 ...
Secondary Topic: Jobs, work, pay & benefits
Lead investigator: Marta C Lopes

The early effects of coronavirus-related social distancing restrictions on brands

This paper presents some of the first evidence on the effect of the spread of coronavirus (Covid-19) in the US on retail footfall traffic. The paper uses granular visit data from cell-phone tracking to estimate the shift in visits to different types ...
Primary Topic: Recession & recovery
Lead investigator: Catherine E. Tucker

Staying home saves lives, really!

As coronavirus disease (Covid-19) is spreading around the world, many national and local governments have imposed social restrictive measures to limit the spread of the virus. Such quarantine measures in different cities across the world have brought...
Primary Topic: Crime & policing
Lead investigator: Soheil Shayegh

Birds of a feather lockdown together: mutual bird-human benefits during a global pandemic

Feeding backyard wildlife has impure public good characteristics – it can satisfy specific human motivations whilst also improving bird populations. We document a surge in human interest in connecting with wild birds during lockdowns to address the...
Lead investigator: Michael Brock

Compulsory face mask policies do not affect community mobility in Germany

There is currently a heated debate about making face masks compulsory in public spaces to contain Covid-19. A key concern is that such policies could lead to risk compensating behaviour and thereby undermine efforts to maintain social distancing and ...
Lead investigator: Roxanne Kovacs

Measuring social distancing: an empirical analysis using geo-location data from smartphones

This research project uses anonymized geo-location data from 60 million mobile phone users in Brazil to quantify the impact of coronavirus lockdown measures on social distancing. The results confirm that the current share of the population staying ho...
Lead investigator: Tharcisio Leon

Does the EU convergence machine still work and how will the Covid-19 crisis impact it?

Economic convergence has been one of the explicit goals of the EU from its very beginning. The prospect of higher living standards has undeniably been a major attraction of EU membership. Conversely, economic divergence may undermine support for the ...
Primary Topic: Nations, regions & cities
Lead investigator: Patrick Bisciari