nep-hea New Economics Papers
on Health Economics
Issue of 2021‒02‒22
forty-one papers chosen by
Nicolas R. Ziebarth
Cornell University

  1. China’s War on Pollution: Evidence from the First Five Years By Michael Greenstone; Guojun He; Shanjun Li; Eric Zou
  2. The Effect of Industrial Robots on Workplace Safety By Ling Li; Perry Singleton
  3. Providers, Peers and Patients: How do Physicians’ Practice Environments Affect Patient Outcomes? By Avdic, Daniel; Ivets, Maryna; Lagerqvist, Bo; Sriubaite, Ieva
  4. Peer groups, social support, and well-being: evidence from a large online maternity community By Jiang, Lingqing; Zhu, Zhen
  5. Resource Allocation in Public Sector Programmes: Does the Value of a Life Differ Between Governmental Departments? By Cubi-Molla, P.; Mott, D.; Henderson, N.; Zamora, B.; Grobler, M.; Garau, M.
  6. The impact of timing of benefit payments on children's outcomes By Sam Sims
  7. Impact of primary care coverage on individual health: evidence from biomarkers in Brazil By Fernando Antonio Slaibe Postali; Maria Dolores M Diaz, Adriano Dutra Teixeira, Natalia Nunes Ferreira Batista, Rodrigo Moreno Serra
  8. Health Information and Lifestyle Behaviours: The Impact of a Diabetes Diagnosis By Gaggero, Alessio; Gil, Joan; Jiménez-Rubio, Dolores; Zucchelli, Eugenio
  9. Cognitive Impairment and Prevalence of Memory-Related Diagnoses among U.S. Older Adults By Qian, Yuting; Chen, Xi; Tang, Diwen; Kelley, Amy S.; Li, Jing
  10. Can Information Influence the Social Insurance Participation Decision of China's Rural Migrants? By Giles, John T.; Meng, Xin; Xue, Sen; Zhao, Guochang
  11. Overambition as Disability: Discrimination of Excellence By Julia M. Puaschunder
  12. Political Violence, Risk Aversion, and Non-Localized Disease Spread: Evidence from the U.S. Capitol Riot By Dhaval M. Dave; Drew McNichols; Joseph J. Sabia
  13. Biases in information selection and processing: Survey evidence from the pandemic By Faia, Ester; Fuster, Andreas; Pezone, Vincenzo; Zafar, Basit
  14. Some Workers Have Been Hit Much Harder than Others by the Pandemic By Jaison R. Abel; Richard Deitz
  15. Measuring the Labor Market at the Onset of the COVID-19 Crisis By Alexander W. Bartik; Marianne Bertrand; Feng Lin; Jesse Rothstein; Matt Unrath
  16. Weather, Psychological Wellbeing and Mobility during the First Wave of the COVID-19 Pandemic By Burdett, Ashley; Davillas, Apostolos; Etheridge, Ben
  17. Optimal Vaccine Subsidies for Endemic and Epidemic Diseases By Matthew Goodkin-Gold; Michael Kremer; Christopher M. Snyder; Heidi L. Williams
  18. Does Testing for Coronavirus reduce Deaths? By Weshah Razzak
  19. A data-driven approach to measuring epidemiological susceptibility risk around the world By Alessandro Bitetto; Paola Cerchiello; Charilaos Mertzanis
  20. To What Extent Does In-Person Schooling Contribute to the Spread of COVID-19? Evidence from Michigan and Washington By Dan Goldhaber; Scott A. Imberman; Katharine O. Strunk; Bryant Hopkins; Nate Brown; Erica Harbatkin; Tara Kilbride
  21. COVID-19 Severity: A New Approach to Quantifying Global Cases and Deaths By Millimet, Daniel L.; Parmeter, Christopher F.
  22. Coronavirus and Social Distancing: Do Non-Pharmaceutical-Interventions Work (at Least) in the Short Run? By Bardey, David; Fernandes, José Manuel; Gravel, Alexis
  23. Unequal mortality during the Spanish Flu By Roses, Joan R.; Domenech Feliu, Jordi; Basco Mascaro, Sergi
  24. Worker well-being before and during the COVID-19 restrictions: A longitudinal study in the UK By Diane Pelly; Michael Daly; Liam Delaney; Orla Doyle
  25. How Does Exposure to COVID-19 Influence Health and Income Inequality Aversion? By Asaria, Miqdad; Costa-Font, Joan; Cowell, Frank A.
  26. Temporal Clustering of Disorder Events During the COVID-19 Pandemic By Campedelli, Gian Maria; D'Orsogna, Maria Rita
  27. How COVID-19 influences healthcare workers' happiness: Panel data analysis in Japan By Eiji Yamamura; Yoshiro Tsutsui
  28. Linking excess mortality to Google mobility data during the COVID-19 pandemic in England and Wales By Ugofilippo Basellini; Diego Alburez-Gutierrez; Emanuele Del Fava; Daniela Perrotta; Marco Bonetti; Carlo Giovanni Camarda; Emilio Zagheni
  29. The Impact of Mass Antigen Testing for COVID-19 on the Prevalence of the Disease By Martin Kahanec; Lukáš Lafférs; Bernhard Schmidpeter
  30. COVID-19 and help-seeking behavior for intimate partner violence victims By Marie Beigelman; Judit Vall Castelló
  31. Estimating the propagation of the COVID-19 virus with a stochastic frontier approximation of epidemiological models: a panel data econometric model with an application to Spain By Orea, Luis; Álvarez, Inmaculada C.; Wall, Alan
  32. Contention over contagion: Citizen responses to COVID-19 policies By Resnick, Danielle
  33. Apart but Connected: Online Tutoring and Student Outcomes during the COVID-19 Pandemic By Carlana, Michela; La Ferrara, Eliana
  34. The Covid-19 pandemic: theoretical and practical perspectives on children, women and sex trafficking By Simplice A. Asongu; Usman M. Usman
  35. Stay-at-Home Orders, Social Distancing and Trust By Brodeur, Abel; Grigoryeva, Idaliya; Kattan, Lamis
  36. Preparing for a Pandemic: Accelerating Vaccine Availability By Amrita Ahuja; Susan Athey; Arthur Baker; Eric Budish; Juan Camilo Castillo; Rachel Glennerster; Scott Duke Kominers; Michael Kremer; Jean Lee; Candice Prendergast; Christopher M. Snyder; Alex Tabborok; Brandon Joel Tan; Witold Wiecek
  37. Long, medium, and short-term effects of COVID-19 on mobility and lifestyle By André de Palma; Shaghayegh Vosough
  38. Which Factors Influence the Number of COVID-19 Cases and Deaths in the European Union? By Petronella Kepes
  39. Understanding the Racial and Income Gap in Commuting for Work Following COVID-19 By Ruchi Avtar; Rajashri Chakrabarti; Maxim L. Pinkovskiy
  40. The covid-19 crisis: an NLP exploration of the french Twitter feed (February-May 2020) By Sophie Balech; C. Benavent; M. Calciu; Julien Monnot
  41. Uncertainty and Decision-Making During a Crisis: How to Make Policy Decisions in the COVID-19 Context? By Loïc Berger; Nicolas Berger; Valentina Bosetti; Itzhak Gilboa; Lars Peter Hansen; Christopher Jarvis; Massimo Marinacci; Richard D. Smith

  1. By: Michael Greenstone; Guojun He; Shanjun Li; Eric Zou
    Abstract: The decade from 2010 to 2019 marked a significant turning point in China’s history of environmental regulation and pollution. This article describes the recent trends in air and water quality, with a focus on the five years since China declared a “war on pollution” in 2014. It summarizes the emerging literature that has taken advantage of accompanying improvements in data availability and accuracy to document sharp improvements in environmental quality, especially local air pollution, and understand their social, economic, and health consequences.
    JEL: Q50 Q53 Q56
    Date: 2021–02
  2. By: Ling Li (University of Wisconsin-Parkside); Perry Singleton (Center for Policy Research, Maxwell School, Syracuse University, 426 Eggers Hall, Syracuse, NY 13244)
    Abstract: This study measures the effect of industrial robots on workplace safety at the commuting zone level, exploiting potentially exogenous variation in robot exposure due to technological progress. Workplace safety is measured by workers involved in severe or fatal accidents inspected by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration. From 2000 to 2007, we find that one additional robot in exposure per 1,000 workers decreased the OSHA accident rate at the mean by 15.1 percent. We also find that robot exposure decreased OSHA violations and accidents more likely to be affected by robot penetration, specifically those involving machinery or electrical.
    Keywords: Industrial Robots, Automation, Workplace Safety, Occupational Safety
    JEL: J81 I10
    Date: 2021–02
  3. By: Avdic, Daniel; Ivets, Maryna; Lagerqvist, Bo; Sriubaite, Ieva
    Abstract: We study the extent to which physician treatment styles are determined by their practice environment and whether such decisions affect the quality of care received by patients. Using rich data on all coronary angioplasty procedures in Sweden 2004–2013, our empirical approach compares stent choices of interventional cardiologists moving across hospitals to patient outcomes over time. To disentangle changes in practice styles attributable to physical (provider) and social (peer group) factors, we exploit quasi‐random variation on physicians working on the same day in the same hospital. Our findings suggest that (i) moving cardiologists’ stent choices rapidly adapt to their new practice environment after relocation; (ii) practice style changes are equally driven by the physical and social environments; and (iii) rates of decision errors, treatment costs and adverse clinical events among treated patients remain largely unchanged despite the altered practice styles.
    Keywords: Practice Style, Environment, Peers, Quality of Care
    Date: 2021
  4. By: Jiang, Lingqing; Zhu, Zhen
    Abstract: Increasing attention is being paid to social determinants of health. We study how quasi-randomly assigned peer groups affect social support among over 24,000 pregnant women, and how social support in these peer groups relates to mothers' well-being both during and after pregnancy as well as birth outcomes. We find that while having more peer groups reduces observable social support in terms of information exchange, it does not seem to undermine perceived social support. Higher perceived social support from online peer groups is positively associated with both prenatal and postnatal mental health of the mothers as well as newborns' birth weight.
    Date: 2021–02–05
  5. By: Cubi-Molla, P.; Mott, D.; Henderson, N.; Zamora, B.; Grobler, M.; Garau, M.
    Abstract: OHE explores the values of life that are used in analyses by the governmental departments of health, social care, environment, and transport, for a range of countries - Australia, Canada, Japan, New Zealand, South Korea, the Netherlands, and the UK. In most of the countries explored in this report, there is evidence that the criteria for resource allocation used by government or its agencies in the health sector values life significantly lower than the other non-health departments. The authors present a theoretical model which suggests that the existence of different values of life across departments is not inconsistent with the idea of optimal resource allocation (in a static model) but only if perfectly counterbalanced by non-health attributes. Notably, some form of reconciliation is needed to correct the potential imbalance in the value of the same attribute (life) across public sectors. Reconciliation could range from reallocation of budgets, transfers of benefit, to adjustments of benchmarking thresholds. Our results were based on a literature review, conducted to identify evidence from technical reports, guidelines, and tools published directly by government departments indicating methods for conducting impact assessments or appraisals. Estimates of value of life identified in the literature review were converted to one common metric (the value of a quality adjusted life year) to enable comparison. The value of life in transport/environment departments is presented as a proportion of the value of life in health departments in each country using the most realistic/commonly applied estimates. These proportions were then compared between countries to assess overall trends.
    Keywords: Value, Affordability, and Decision Making
    JEL: I1
    Date: 2021–02–01
  6. By: Sam Sims (Centre for Education Policy and Equalising Opportunities, UCL Institute of Education, University College London)
    Abstract: Living in poverty negatively affects children's health and education outcomes (Cooper & Stewart, 2020). One reason for this - recently highlighted in the UK by footballer Marcus Rashford - is that families on low incomes often cannot afford enough food to last the month. The most direct method of addressing child food poverty would be to provide poor families with additional income. For the time being, however, the UK government appears reluctant to do this. An alternative policy response relies on changing the timing, rather than the value, of benefit payments. While the date of payment might seem like an administrative detail, research from the US suggests it matters. This briefing note reviews the evidence to explore how children in the UK might be affected by the timing of their benefit payments. For context, the UK government is currently switching claimants of six separate benefits onto a single `Universal Credit' (UC) benefit. Consequently, UC households will now receive a single payment on a given day each month, rather than receiving multiple benefits, paid to different individuals, on different days. The move to UC therefore makes the timing of that single payment particularly important.
    Keywords: child outcomes; welfare payments
    Date: 2021–02
  7. By: Fernando Antonio Slaibe Postali; Maria Dolores M Diaz, Adriano Dutra Teixeira, Natalia Nunes Ferreira Batista, Rodrigo Moreno Serra
    Abstract: This paper explores the relationship between primary care coverage and individual health in Brazil, using a dataset of blood and nurse-based biomarkers collected during a national health survey carried out in 2013. Both survey data and laboratory results were crossed with coverage data from the Family Health Strategy (ESF), the largest and most important primary care program in Brazil. The coverage measures aim to capture both direct (household) and indirect (spillover) effects. The empirical strategy uses a probit model to estimate the relationship between ESF coverage and the likelihood of abnormal biomarker levels, controlling for the local availability of health facilities and a rich set of individual and household characteristics coming from the national survey. The results suggest that broader ESF household coverage is linked to a decrease in the likelihood of abnormal results for biomarkers related to anemia, kidney failure and arterial hypertension, as well as for white blood cells and thrombocytes. Intensity of coverage matters for dengue, once its antibodies are negatively correlated with the number of ESF visits received by the household. The spillover effect proved to be relevant for kidney failure, diabetes mellitus and arterial hypertension. Cholesterol did not present any relationship with ESF.
    Keywords: Primary care; Biomarkers; Probit; Impact evaluation
    JEL: I18 C13 C31
    Date: 2021–02–05
  8. By: Gaggero, Alessio (Universidad de Granada); Gil, Joan (University of Barcelona); Jiménez-Rubio, Dolores (Universidad de Granada); Zucchelli, Eugenio (Universidad Autónoma de Madrid)
    Abstract: We estimate short- and long-term causal impacts of a type-2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM) diagnosis on lifestyle behaviours. We employ a fuzzy regression discontinuity design exploiting the exogenous cut-off value in the diagnosis of T2DM provided by a biomarker (glycated haemoglobin, HbA1c). We make use of unique administrative longitudinal data from Spain and focus on the impact of a diagnosis on clinically measured BMI, smoking and alcohol consumption. We find that, following a T2DM diagnosis, individuals appear to reduce their weight in the short-term. These effects are particularly large among obese individuals and those diagnosed with depression. Patients who are younger, still in the labour market and healthier also present increased short-term probabilities of quitting smoking. In addition, we provide evidence of statistically significant long-term impacts of a T2DM diagnosis on BMI up to three years from the diagnosis. Our results are consistent across parametric and non-parametric estimations with varying bandwidths. Overall, our findings suggest the relevance of health information in affecting changes in key lifestyle behaviours.
    Keywords: regression discontinuity design, lifestyle behaviours, health information, diabetes, administrative data
    JEL: C21 I10 I12
    Date: 2021–02
  9. By: Qian, Yuting (Weill Cornell Medical College); Chen, Xi (Yale University); Tang, Diwen (Fudan University, China); Kelley, Amy S. (Icahn School of Medicine); Li, Jing (Weill Cornell Medical College)
    Abstract: Cognitive impairment creates significant challenges to health and well-being of the fast-growing aging population. Early recognition of cognitive impairment may confer important advantages, allowing for diagnosis and appropriate treatment, education, psychosocial support, and improved decision-making regarding life planning, health care, and financial matters. Yet the prevalence of memory-related diagnoses among older adults with early symptoms of cognitive impairment is unknown. Using 2000-2014 Health and Retirement Survey - Medicare linked data, we leveraged within-individual variation in a longitudinal cohort design to examine the relationship between incident cognitive impairment and receipt of diagnosis among American older adults. Receipt of a memory-related diagnosis was determined by ICD-9-CM codes. Incident cognitive impairment was assessed using the modified Telephone Interview of Cognitive Status (TICS). We found overall low prevalence of early memory-related diagnosis, or high rate of underdiagnosis, among older adults showing symptoms of cognitive impairment, especially among non-whites and socioeconomically disadvantaged subgroups. Our findings call for targeted interventions to improve the rate of early diagnosis, especially among vulnerable populations.
    Keywords: cognitive impairment, cognitive aging, dementia, Medicare, memory-related diagnosis
    JEL: I11 I14 J14 I18 R20
    Date: 2021–02
  10. By: Giles, John T. (World Bank); Meng, Xin (Australian National University); Xue, Sen (Jinan University); Zhao, Guochang (Southwest University of Finance and Economics, Chengdu)
    Abstract: This paper uses a randomized information intervention to shed light on whether poor understanding of social insurance, both the process of enrolling and costs and benefits, drives the relatively low rates of participation in urban health insurance and pension programs among China's rural-urban migrants. Among workers without a contract, the information intervention has a strong positive effect on participation in health insurance and, among younger age groups, in pension programs. Migrants are responsive to price: in cities where the premia are low relative to earnings, information induces health insurance participation, while declines are observed in cities with high relative premia.
    Keywords: migration, social insurance, information, randomised controlled trial
    JEL: H53 H55 J46 J61 O15 O17 O53 P35
    Date: 2021–02
  11. By: Julia M. Puaschunder (The New School, Parsons School of Design, USA)
    Abstract: This paper draws attention to discrimination of excellence in order to propose an inequality alleviation strategy in connecting overachievers with discriminated-against minorities. Discrimination of excellence is the unjust treatment of outperformers and overachievers. Defining discrimination of excellence and describing the implicit mechanisms of aversion against excellence depicts overambition as handicap. Overambition may thereby become a disability. This article first introduces the concept of discrimination of excellence, to then draw inferences about overachievement being comparable to a disability. Lastly, discrimination of excellence alleviation strategies are proposed.
    Keywords: Aversion against excellence, Disability, Discrimination of excellence, Inequality, Justice, Outperformance, Overambition
    Date: 2020–10
  12. By: Dhaval M. Dave; Drew McNichols; Joseph J. Sabia
    Abstract: On January 6, 2021, the U.S. Capitol was sieged by rioters protesting certification of Joseph R. Biden’s election as the 46th president of the United States. The Director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) quickly predicted that the Riot would be a COVID-19 “surge event.” This study is the first to estimate the impact of the Capitol Riot on risk-averting behavior and community-level spread of the novel coronavirus. First, using anonymized smartphone data from SafeGraph, Inc. and an event-study approach, we document that on January 6th there was a substantial increase in non-resident smartphone pings in the census block groups including the Ellipse, the National Mall, and the U.S. Capitol Building, consistent with a large protest that day. Next, using data from the same source and a synthetic control approach, we find that the Capitol Riot increased stay-at-home behavior among District of Columbia residents, indicative of risk averting behaviors in response to violence and health risks. Finally, turning to COVID-19 case data, we find no evidence that the Capitol Riot substantially increased community spread of COVID-19 in the District of Columbia in the month-long period following the event. This may be due to increases in social distancing and a “virtual lockdown” of the Capitol prior to the inauguration of the new president. However, exploiting variation in non-resident smartphone inflows into the January 6 Capitol protest, we find that counties with the highest protester inflows experienced a significant increase in the rate of daily cumulative COVID-19 case growth in the month following the protest. We conclude that the Capitol Riot may have contributed to non-localized COVID-19 spread.
    JEL: D8 H75 I1
    Date: 2021–02
  13. By: Faia, Ester; Fuster, Andreas; Pezone, Vincenzo; Zafar, Basit
    Abstract: How people form beliefs is crucial for understanding decision-making under uncertainty. This is particularly true in a situation such as a pandemic, where beliefs will affect behaviors that impact public health as well as the aggregate economy. We conduct two survey experiments to shed light on potential biases in belief formation, focusing in particular on the tone of information people choose to consume and how they incorporate this information into their beliefs. In the first experiment, people express their preferences over pandemic-related articles with optimistic and pessimistic headlines, and are then randomly shown one of the articles. We find that respondents with more pessimistic prior beliefs about the pandemic are substantially more likely to prefer pessimistic articles, which we interpret as evidence of confirmation bias. In line with this, respondents assigned to the less preferred article rate it as less reliable and informative (relative to those who prefer it); they also discount information from the article when it is less preferred. We further find that these motivated beliefs end up impacting incentivized behavior. In a second experiment, we study how partisan views interact with information selection and processing. We find strong evidence of source dependence: revealing the news source further distorts information acquisition and processing, eliminating the role of prior beliefs in article choice.
    Keywords: Belief updating,confirmatory biases,endogenous information acquisition,media polarization,source dependence,COVID-19
    JEL: D84 D91 E71 I12
    Date: 2021
  14. By: Jaison R. Abel; Richard Deitz
    Abstract: As the COVID-19 pandemic took hold in the United States, in just two months—between February and April 2020—the nation saw well over 20 million workers lose their jobs, an unprecedented 15 percent decline. Since then, substantial progress has been made, but employment still remains 5 percent below its pre-pandemic level. However, not all workers have been affected equally. This post is the first in a three-part series exploring disparities in labor market outcomes during the pandemic—and represents an extension of ongoing research into heterogeneities and inequalities in people’s experience across large segments of the economy including access to credit, health, housing, and education. Here we find that some workers were much more likely to lose their jobs than others, particularly lower-wage workers and those without a college degree, as well as women, minorities, and younger workers. However, as jobs have returned during the recovery, many of these differences have narrowed considerably, though some gaps are widening again as the labor market has weakened due to a renewed surge in the coronavirus. The next post in the series examines differences in patterns of commuting during the pandemic, and finds that workers in low-income and Black- and Hispanic-majority communities were more likely to commute for work. The final post in the series analyzes unemployment dynamics during the pandemic, and finds that Black workers experienced a lower job-finding rate and a higher separation rate into unemployment than white workers during the recovery, though this trend has reversed to some extent recently.
    Keywords: pandemic; heterogeneity; labor market
    JEL: I14 J15 J20
    Date: 2021–02–09
  15. By: Alexander W. Bartik (University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign - Department of Economics); Marianne Bertrand (University of Chicago - Booth School of Business); Feng Lin (University of Chicago - Booth School of Business); Jesse Rothstein (University of California, Berkeley - Goldman School of Public Policy and Department of Economics); Matt Unrath (University of California, Berkeley - Goldman School of Public Policy)
    Abstract: We use traditional and non-traditional data to measure the collapse and partial recovery of the U.S. labor market from March to early July, contrast this downturn to previous recessions, and provide preliminary evidence on the effects of the policy response. For hourly workers at both small and large businesses, nearly all of the decline in employment occurred between March 14 and 28. It was driven by low-wage services, particularly the retail and leisure and hospitality sectors. A large share of the job losses in small businesses reflected firms that closed entirely, though many subsequently reopened. Firms that were already unhealthy were more likely to close and less likely to reopen, and disadvantaged workers were more likely to be laid off and less likely to return. Most laid off workers expected to be recalled, and this was predictive of rehiring. Shelter-in-place orders drove only a small share of job losses. Last, states that received more small business loans from the Paycheck Protection Program and states with more generous unemployment insurance benefits had milder declines and faster recoveries. We find no evidence that high UI replacement rates drove job losses or slowed rehiring.
    JEL: E24 E32 J2 J63
    Date: 2020
  16. By: Burdett, Ashley (University of Essex); Davillas, Apostolos (University of East Anglia); Etheridge, Ben (University of Essex)
    Abstract: To reduce infection rates during the first UK wave of the COVID-19 outbreak, a first lockdown was announced on March 23, 2020, with a final easing of the restrictions on July 4, 2020. Among the most important public health costs of lockdown restrictions are the potential adverse effects on mental health and physical activity. Using data from the UK Household Longitudinal Study (UKHLS) and Google COVID-19 Mobility Reports we find evidence of reduced park mobility during the initial period of the first UK lockdown and confirm existing evidence of worsening psychological wellbeing. Linkage with weather data shows that contrary to popular belief, weather conditions do not exacerbate the mental health consequences of the pandemic, while we find systematic links between park mobility and weather over the same period. Our results highlight the importance of promoting the existing guidelines on regular exercise during winter lockdowns.
    Keywords: COVID-19, mental health, mobility, weather conditions
    JEL: I10 I12 C23
    Date: 2021–02
  17. By: Matthew Goodkin-Gold (Harvard University - Department of Economics); Michael Kremer (University of Chicago - Department of Economics; NBER); Christopher M. Snyder (Dartmouth College - Department of Economics; NBER); Heidi L. Williams (Stanford University - Department of Economics; NBER)
    Abstract: Vaccines exert a positive externality, reducing spread of disease from the consumer to others, providing a rationale for subsidies. We study how optimal subsidies vary with disease characteristics by integrating a standard epidemiological model into a vaccine market with rational economic agents. In the steady-state equilibrium for an endemic disease, across market structures ranging from competition to monopoly, the marginal externality and optimal subsidy are non-monotonic in disease infectiousness, peaking for diseases that spread quickly but not so quickly as to drive all consumers to become vaccinated. Motivated by the Covid-19 pandemic, we adapt the analysis to study a vaccine campaign introduced at a point in time against an emerging epidemic. While the nonmonotonic pattern of the optimal subsidy persists, new findings emerge. Universal vaccination with a perfectly effective vaccine becomes a viable firm strategy: the marginal consumer is still willing to pay since those infected before vaccine rollout remain a source of transmission. We derive a simple condition under which vaccination exhibits increasing social returns, providing an argument for concentrating a capacity-constrained campaign in few regions. We discuss a variety of extensions and calibrations of the results to vaccines and other mitigation measures targeting existing diseases.
    JEL: D4 I18 L11 L65 O31
    Date: 2020
  18. By: Weshah Razzak
    Abstract: We examine the effect of testing for Coronavirus on deaths in eight countries over the month of March 2020 by estimating a fixed-effect regression model using the Generalized Method of Moments (GMM). On average, the data reject the hypothesis that “testing†for the virus does not affect death. By country, however, we reject the hypothesis in two countries at the 5 percent level, in three countries at the 10 percent level, and could not reject it in three other countries. On average, testing for the virus is an important element of the health policy.
    Keywords: Pandemic, Testing and Deaths, Panel Data, Fixed Effect Model, GMM
    JEL: I10 C23 C26
    Date: 2020–06–06
  19. By: Alessandro Bitetto (University of Pavia); Paola Cerchiello (University of Pavia); Charilaos Mertzanis (University of Pavia)
    Abstract: Epidemic outbreaks are extreme events that become less rare and more severe. They are associated with large social and economic costs. It is therefore important to evaluate whether countries are prepared to manage epidemiological risks. We use a fully data-driven approach to measure epidemiological susceptibility risk at the country level using time-varying and regularly reproduced information that captures the role of demographics, infrastructure, governance and economic activity conditions. Given the nature of the problem, we choose both principal component analysis (PCA) and dynamic factor model (DFM) to deal with the presence of strong cross-section dependence in the data due to unobserved common factors. We conduct extensive in-sample model evaluations of 168 countries covering 17 indicators for the 2010-2019 period. The results show that the robust PCA method accounts for about 90% of total variability, whilst the DFM accounts for about 76% of the total variability. Our framework and index could therefore provide the basis for developing risk assessments of epidemiological risk contagion after the outbreak of an epidemic but also for ongoing monitoring of its spread and social and economic effects. It could be also used by firms to assess likely economic consequences of epidemics with useful managerial implication.
    Keywords: Innovative Applications of O.R., Epidemiological risk, Data-driven, Cross-country, Policy framework, Principal Component Analysis, Dynamic Factor Model, Machine learning
    JEL: I18 C55 C38 F68
    Date: 2021–02
  20. By: Dan Goldhaber; Scott A. Imberman; Katharine O. Strunk; Bryant Hopkins; Nate Brown; Erica Harbatkin; Tara Kilbride
    Abstract: The decision about how and when to open schools to in-person instruction has been a key question for policymakers throughout the COVID-19 pandemic. The instructional modality of schools has implications not only for the health and safety of students and staff, but also student learning and the degree to which parents can engage in job activities. We consider the role of instructional modality (in-person, hybrid, or remote instruction) in disease spread among the wider community. Using a variety of regression modeling strategies , we find that simple correlations show in-person modalities are correlated with increased COVID cases, but accounting for both pre-existing cases and a richer set of covariates brings estimates close to zero on average. In Ordinary Least Squares (OLS) specifications, in-person modality options are not associated with increased spread of COVID at low levels of pre-existing COVID cases but cases do increase at moderate to high pre-existing COVID rates. A bounding exercise suggests that the OLS findings for in-person modality are likely to represent an upper bound on the true relationship. These findings are robust to the inclusion of county and district fixed effects in terms of the insignificance of the findings, but the models with fixed effects are also somewhat imprecisely estimated.
    JEL: I1 I2
    Date: 2021–02
  21. By: Millimet, Daniel L. (Southern Methodist University); Parmeter, Christopher F. (University of Miami)
    Abstract: Accurate counts of cases and deaths are critical for devising an optimal pandemic response. Yet, as the COVID-19 pandemic has progressed, so too has the recognition that cases and deaths have been underreported, perhaps vastly so. Here, we present an econometric strategy to estimate the true number of COVID-19 cases and deaths for roughly 60 countries from January 1 through November 3, 2020. Specifically, we estimate a 'structural' model based on the workhorse SIR epidemiological model extended to incorporate measurement error. The results indicate significant under-reporting by magnitudes that align with existing research and conjectures by public health experts. While our approach requires some strong assumptions, these assumptions are very different from the equally strong assumptions required by other approaches addressing under-reporting in the assessment of the extent of the pandemic. Thus, we view our approach as a complement to existing methods.
    Keywords: COVID-19, nonclassical measurement error, stochastic frontier analysis
    JEL: C18 H12 I18
    Date: 2021–02
  22. By: Bardey, David (Universidad de los Andes); Fernandes, José Manuel (European Parliament); Gravel, Alexis (ENS Paris-Saclay)
    Abstract: Using detailed daily information covering 100 countries and an event-study approach, we estimate the short run effects of implementing Non-Pharmaceutical Interventions (NPIs) on the spread of the COVID-19 virus at the early stages of the pandemic. We study the impact of two NPIs -stay-at-home requirements and workplace closures- on three outcomes: daily residential and workplace mobility; the daily growth rate of cases; and the daily growth rate of fatalities. Acknowledging that we observe a mobility reduction in countries before they implemented NPIs, we find that immediately after NPIs were implemented, mobility declined by 0.2 standard deviation (SD), and two weeks afterwards it was down by 0.7 SDs. 25 days after the NPIs were implemented, the daily growth rate of cases and deaths was lower by 10% and 8.4% respectively. Our results reveal that between 53 and 72 percent of the reduction of the daily growth rate of cases and deaths associated with a reduction of mobility is caused by NPIs.
    Keywords: COVID-19, non-pharmaceutical interventions, pandemic
    JEL: I12 I18 I38
    Date: 2021–02
  23. By: Roses, Joan R.; Domenech Feliu, Jordi; Basco Mascaro, Sergi
    Abstract: The outburst of deaths and cases of Covid-19 around the world has renewed the interest to understand the mortality effects of pandemics across regions, occupations, age and gender. The Spanish Flu is the closest pandemic to Covid-19. Mortality rates in Spain were among the largest in today's developed countries. Our research documents a substantial heterogeneity on mortality rates across occupations. The highest mortality was on low-income workers. We also record a rural mortality penalty that reversed the historical urban penalty temporally. The higher capacity of certain social groups to isolate themselves from social contact could explain these mortality differentials. However, adjusting mortality evidence by these two factors, there were still large mortality inter-provincial differences for the same occupation and location, suggesting the existence of a regional component in rates of flu contagion possibly related to climatic differences.
    Keywords: Urban Penalty; Socio-Economic Differences; Health Inequality; Pandemics
    JEL: I14 J1 N34
    Date: 2021–02–09
  24. By: Diane Pelly (School of Economics, University College Dublin); Michael Daly (Department of Psychology, Maynooth University); Liam Delaney (Behavioural Science Unit, London School of Economics); Orla Doyle (School of Economics, University College Dublin)
    Abstract: The potential impact of COVID-19 restrictions on worker well-being is currently unknown. In this study we examine 15 well-being outcomes collected from 621 full-time workers assessed before (November, 2019 - February, 2020) and during (May-June, 2020) the COVID-19 pandemic. Fixed effects analyses are used to investigate how the COVID-19 restrictions and involuntary homeworking affect well-being and job performance. The majority of worker well-being measures are not adversely affected. Homeworkers feel more engaged and autonomous, experience fewer negative emotions and feel more connected to their organisations. However, these improvements come at the expense of reduced homelife satisfaction and job performance.
    Keywords: COVID-19 restrictions, workers, homeworking, subjective well-being, productivity, mental health, job satisfaction, engagement
    JEL: J08 J24 I31
    Date: 2021–01–01
  25. By: Asaria, Miqdad (London School of Economics); Costa-Font, Joan (London School of Economics); Cowell, Frank A. (London School of Economics)
    Abstract: We study whether exposure to COVID-19 has affected individual aversion to health and income inequality in the UK, Italy, and Germany, as well as the effect of personal shocks on employment (redundancies, government replacement salary and unemployment), income and health directly linked to COVID-19. We find that conditioned on risk aversion and relevant covariates (income, education, demographics), individuals who have experienced either a health or an financial shock during the COVID-19 pandemic, exhibit lower inequality aversion in terms of health and income, compared to those who have not experienced these shocks. Comparing levels of health and income inequality aversion in the UK between the years 2016 and 2020 we find a significant increase in inequality aversion from 2016 to 2020 in both health (17.3%) and income domains (8.8%). However, our difference-in-differences (DiD) for treatment (risk) groups defined in terms of age, region and personal exposure to health and income shocks in 2020 compared to 2016, does not indicate any additional difference in inequality aversion. The exception being individuals who are both in a high-risk age group and at the same time also experienced a health shock in 2020 compared to 2016, which are significantly more inequality averse in both health and income domains.
    Keywords: inequality aversion, income, health, COVID-19, attitudes to inequality, employment shocks, health shocks, difference in differences
    JEL: I18 I30 I38
    Date: 2021–02
  26. By: Campedelli, Gian Maria; D'Orsogna, Maria Rita
    Abstract: The COVID-19 pandemic has unleashed multiple public health, socio-economic, and institutional crises. Measures taken to slow the spread of the virus have fostered significant strain between authorities and citizens, leading to waves of social unrest and anti-government demonstrations. We study the temporal nature of pandemic-related disorder events as tallied by the "COVID-19 Disorder Tracker" initiative by focusing on the three countries with the largest number of incidents, India, Israel, and Mexico. By fitting Poisson and Hawkes processes to the stream of data, we find that disorder events are inter-dependent and self-excite in all three countries. Geographic clustering confirms these features at the subnational level, indicating that nationwide disorders emerge as the convergence of meso-scale patterns of self-excitation. Considerable diversity is observed among countries when computing correlations of events between subnational clusters; these are discussed in the context of specific political, societal and geographic characteristics. Israel, the most territorially compact and where large scale protests were coordinated in response to government lockdowns, displays the largest reactivity and the shortest period of influence following an event, as well as the strongest nationwide synchrony. In Mexico, where complete lockdown orders were never mandated, reactivity and nationwide synchrony are lowest. Our work highlights the need for authorities to promote local information campaigns to ensure that livelihoods and virus containment policies are not perceived as mutually exclusive.
    Date: 2021–01–18
  27. By: Eiji Yamamura; Yoshiro Tsutsui
    Abstract: Healthcare workers are more likely to be infected with the 2019 novel coronavirus (COVID-19) because of unavoidable contact with infected people. Although they are equipped to reduce the likelihood of infection, their distress has increased. This study examines how COVID-19 influences healthcare workers' happiness, compared to other workers. We constructed panel data via Internet surveys during the COVID-19 epidemic in Japan, from March to June 2020, by surveying the same respondents at different times. The survey period started before the state of emergency, and ended after deregulation. The key findings are as follows. (1) Overall, the happiness level of healthcare workers is lower than that of other workers. (2) The biggest disparity in happiness level, between healthcare workers and others, was observed after deregulation and not during the state of emergency. After deregulation, the difference was larger by 0.26 points, on an 11-point scale, than in the initial wave before the state of emergency.
    Date: 2021–01
  28. By: Ugofilippo Basellini; Diego Alburez-Gutierrez; Emanuele Del Fava; Daniela Perrotta; Marco Bonetti; Carlo Giovanni Camarda; Emilio Zagheni
    Abstract: Non-pharmaceutical interventions have been implemented worldwide to curb the spread of COVID-19. However, the effectiveness of such governmental measures in reducing the mortality burden remains a key question of scientific interest and public debate. In this study, we leverage digital mobility data to assess the effects of reduced human mobility on excess mortality, focusing on regional data in England and Wales between February and August 2020. We estimate a robust association between mobility reductions and lower excess mortality, after adjusting for time trends and regional differences in a mixed-effects regression framework and considering a five-week lag between the two measures. We predict that, in the absence of mobility reductions, the number of excess deaths could have more than doubled in England and Wales during this period, especially in the London area. The study is one of the first attempts to quantify the effects of mobility reductions on excess mortality during the COVID-19 pandemic.
    Date: 2020
  29. By: Martin Kahanec; Lukáš Lafférs; Bernhard Schmidpeter
    Abstract: More than a year since the first outbreak in China in December 2019, most countries are still struggling to contain the COVID-19 pandemic. Mass antigen testing has been proposed as an instrument to mitigate the spread of the disease and allow the economy to re-open. We investigate the potential benefits of mass antigen testing for the mitigation of the pandemic, using data from a uniquely designed testing that took place in Slovakia in autumn 2020. As the first country in the world, Slovakia implemented and repeated mass rapid antigen testing. After the first round of nation-wide testing, only districts above an ex-ante unknown prevalence threshold were re-tested. Comparing districts in the neighborhood above and below the threshold using a quasi-experimental design, we find that repeated mass antigen testing reduces infections by about 25-30% and results in a decrease in R0 of 0.3 two weeks after the testing. These effects peaked about 15 days after the second round of testing and gradually dissipated afterward. These results suggest that mass testing could be an effective tool in curbing the spread of COVID-19, but for lasting effects it would need to be conducted regularly in relatively short intervals.
    Keywords: COVID-19, COVID-19 policies, Causal impact, Antigen testing, Mass testing, Non-pharmaceutical interventions
    JEL: D04 I18 J22
    Date: 2021–01–29
  30. By: Marie Beigelman (Universitat de Barcelona & CRES-UPF); Judit Vall Castelló (Universitat de Barcelona & IEB & CRES-UPF)
    Abstract: Using detailed data at the local level on the number of calls to the domestic violence emergency hotline in Spain, we study the effect of the COVID-19 outbreak and the quarantine measures imposed on the help-seeking behavior of intimate partner violence victims. Our analysis focuses on Spain, which is one of the European countries that was most affected by the COVID-19 pandemic and, as a consequence, implemented one of the strictest quarantine policies in Europe. We find that the implementation of the lockdown policy was associated with a 41 percentage point increase in the number of calls to the emergency hotline compared to the pre-policy period. This effect was stronger during the strict confinement period but persisted in the medium term, after quarantine was lifted. Using detailed mobile phone data to measure mobility levels, we document stronger effects in provinces whose effective mobility reduction was more intense. Our results are crucial from a policy perspective, as many countries are faced with a second wave of the pandemic.
    Keywords: Intimate partner violence, COVID-19, help-seeking behavior
    JEL: J12 J16 J18 I12
    Date: 2020
  31. By: Orea, Luis; Álvarez, Inmaculada C.; Wall, Alan
    Abstract: The literature examining the propagation of COVID-19 has mainly used pure epidemiological models focused on estimating reproductive numbers, mortality and other epidemiological features. In this paper we use a stochastic frontier analysis (SFA) approach to model the propagation of the epidemic across geographical areas, which complements existing epidemiological models. Our work bridges the SFA and epidemiological literatures and shows that the translation from epidemiological models to SFA implies strong assumptions and introduces measurement errors. We propose two different specifications of the stochastic frontier model: first, a stochastic frontier based on an epidemiological SIR model specification; and second, an approximation to this SIR-based frontier based on functions of the length of time since the outbreak of the virus began. These models permit reported and undocumented cases to be estimated. The appeal of these models lies in the fact that they can be estimated using only epidemic-type data and yet are flexible enough to permit these reporting rates to vary across geographical cross-section units of observation and to allow other covariates affecting reported and undocumented rates to be incorporated. We provide an empirical application of our models to Spanish data corresponding to the initial months of the original outbreak of the virus in early 2019 where we introduce a series of series of extensions to base model and specification robustness checks.
    Date: 2021
  32. By: Resnick, Danielle
    Abstract: At the outset of 2021, COVID-19 continues to test the limits of state–society relationships in much of the developing world. On January 7, Senegal’s capital Dakar experienced violent demonstrations opposing a nighttime curfew imposed by the government under a new state of emergency law intended to limit the spread of the coronavirus (Ollivier 2021). A week later, Tunisia implemented a new national lockdown, sparking successive nights of rioting in various cities across the country that prompted intervention by the army. In both cases, grievances over the economic impacts of movement restrictions motivated protesters (Cordall 2021).
    Keywords: WORLD; Coronavirus; coronavirus disease; Coronavirinae; COVID-19; policies; public participation; governance; mobilization; government; protests; curfew; lockdown; citizens; riot
    Date: 2021
  33. By: Carlana, Michela (Harvard Kennedy School); La Ferrara, Eliana (Bocconi University)
    Abstract: In response to the COVID-19 outbreak, the governments of most countries ordered the closure of schools, potentially exacerbating existing learning gaps. This paper evaluates the effectiveness of an intervention implemented in Italian middle schools that provides free individual tutoring online to disadvantaged students during lock-down. Tutors are university students who volunteer for 3 to 6 hours per week. They were randomly assigned to middle school students, from a list of potential beneficiaries compiled by school principals. Using original survey data collected from students, parents, teachers and tutors, we find that the program substantially increased students' academic performance (by 0.26 SD on average) and that it significantly improved their socio-emotional skills, aspirations, and psychological well-being. Effects are stronger for children from lower socioeconomic status and, in the case of psychological well-being, for immigrant children.
    Keywords: tutoring, COVID-19, education, achievement, aspirations, socioemotional skills, well-being
    JEL: I24 I21
    Date: 2021–02
  34. By: Simplice A. Asongu (Yaounde, Cameroon); Usman M. Usman (University of Malaya, Malaysia)
    Abstract: We provide theoretical and practical perspectives on children, women, and sex trafficking during the Covid-19 pandemic. Process tracing is employed as a primary research instrument. It is an analytical technique used for either theory-building or theory-testing purposes that is employed to elucidate causation and change as well as to develop and evaluate extant theories in social sciences. We illustrate that a policy is needed that will strengthen the capacity of existing structures in the fight against the underlying trafficking so that these attendant structures are efficiently used to stop the trafficking and avoid the corresponding threats to public health safety.
    Keywords: Coronavirus, pandemic, human trafficking, girls and women, feminism
    Date: 2020–01
  35. By: Brodeur, Abel; Grigoryeva, Idaliya; Kattan, Lamis
    Abstract: A better understanding of community response to government decisions is crucial for policy makers and health officials during the COVID-19 pandemic. In this study, we document the determinants of implementation and compliance with stay-at-home orders in the U.S., focusing on trust and social capital. Using cell phone data measuring changes in non-essential visitation and average distance traveled, we find that high-trust counties decrease their mobility significantly more than low-trust counties post stay-at-home order, with larger effects for more stringent orders. We also provide evidence that the estimated effect on post-order compliance is especially large for confidence in the press and governmental institutions, and relatively smaller for confidence in medicine and in science.
    Keywords: COVID-19,stay-at-home orders,social distancing,trust
    JEL: H12 I12 I18
    Date: 2021
  36. By: Amrita Ahuja (Douglas B. Marshall, Jr. Family Foundation); Susan Athey (Stanford University - Stanford Graduate School of Business); Arthur Baker (University of Chicago - Department of Economics); Eric Budish (University of Chicago - Booth School of Business); Juan Camilo Castillo (University of Pennsylvania - Department of Economics); Rachel Glennerster (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office); Scott Duke Kominers (Harvard University - Harvard Business School); Michael Kremer (University of Chicago - Department of Economics); Jean Lee (World Bank); Candice Prendergast (University of Chicago - Booth School of Business); Christopher M. Snyder (Dartmouth College - Department of Economics); Alex Tabborok (George Mason University - Department of Economics); Brandon Joel Tan (Harvard University - Department of Economics); Witold Wiecek (WAW Statistical Consulting)
    Abstract: Vaccinating the world’s population quickly in a pandemic has enormous health and economic benefits. We analyze the problem faced by governments in determining the scale and structure of procurement for vaccines. We analyze alternative approaches to procurement, arguing that buyers should directly fund manufacturing capacity and shoulder most of the risk of failure, while maintaining some direct incentives for speed. We analyzed the optimal portfolio of vaccine investments for countries with different characteristics as well as the implications for international cooperation. Our analysis, considered in light of the experience of 2020, suggests lessons for future pandemics.
    Date: 2020
  37. By: André de Palma; Shaghayegh Vosough (Université de Cergy-Pontoise, THEMA)
    Abstract: The outbreak of SARS-CoV-2 has led to the COVID-19 pandemic in March 2020 and causes over 2 million deaths worldwide (by January 2021). Besides the public health crisis, the infection affected the global economy as well. It also led to change in people's lifestyles, amount of teleworking and teleshopping, mode choice preference, the value of time, etc. In addition to these short-term changes during the COVID-19 outbreak, this drastic transformation of the world might account for the potentially disruptive medium- and long-term impacts. Recognizing the adverse effects of the COVID-19 pandemic is crucial in mitigating the negative behavioral changes that directly relate to psychological well-being. It is important to stress that citizens and government face an uncertain situation since nobody knows the exact parameters, which explain congestion or when the vaccine will be distributed (and its efficiency, for example, with respect to mutations). The major sources of uncertainty in the context of mobility, which have an impact on short-run (route, departure time, and mode used), medium-run (car ownership), and long-run (location of job, residential location, and choice of job) mobility, are mostly listed in this paper.
    Keywords: COVID-19, Mobility, Housing, Teleworking, Teleshopping, Residentia location, Heath.
    JEL: H12 H84 I14 R4
    Date: 2021
  38. By: Petronella Kepes (Budapest University of Technology and Economics, Hungary)
    Abstract: The COVID-19 pandemic influenced the whole year of 2020, and it is still a determinative factor in everyday decisions. The schools and workplaces - where possible - moved to people's homes, changing the way humans used to operate in the last century. It affects almost every country on Earth, while this is only the first wave of the pandemic. Not even the researchers know when it will end, what the solution will be, or whether a vaccine will be found. The research focuses on this pandemic, limited to the European Union's territory, but also includes the following four countries: Iceland, Norway, Switzerland, and the United Kingdom. The countries in this region had different approaches and results regarding the coronavirus. This paper aims to define the most critical social and economic determinants (e.g., GDP, Healthcare expenditure, median age, Hofstede's dimensions), which have the highest impact on the number of confirmed COVID-19 Cases and Deaths. The paper highlights these factors by using the Ordinary Least Squares (OLS) regression model, creating the equations that define the number of cases and deaths.
    Keywords: COVID-19, OLS regression, European Union, Healthcare, Hofstede
    Date: 2020–08
  39. By: Ruchi Avtar; Rajashri Chakrabarti; Maxim L. Pinkovskiy
    Abstract: The introduction of numerous social distancing policies across the United States, combined with voluntary pullbacks in activity as responses to the COVID-19 outbreak, resulted in differences emerging in the types of work that were done from home and those that were not. Workers at businesses more likely to require in-person work—for example, some, but not all, workers in healthcare, retail, agriculture and construction—continued to come in on a regular basis. In contrast, workers in many other businesses, such as IT and finance, were generally better able to switch to working from home rather than commuting daily to work. In this post, we aim to understand whether following the onset of the pandemic there was a wedge in the incidence of commuting for work across income and race. And how did this difference, if any, change as the economy slowly recovered? We take advantage of a unique data source, SafeGraph cell phone data, to identify workers who continued to commute to work in low income versus higher income and majority-minority (MM) versus other counties.
    Keywords: essential worker; work from home; COVID-19; full time; part time
    JEL: E24 E3 I14 J20
    Date: 2021–02–09
  40. By: Sophie Balech (CRIISEA - Centre de Recherche sur les Institutions, l'Industrie et les Systèmes Économiques d'Amiens - UPJV - Université de Picardie Jules Verne); C. Benavent; M. Calciu; Julien Monnot
    Abstract: The Covid-19 pandemic offers a spectacular case of disaster management. In this literature, the paradigm of participation is fundamental: the mitigation of the impact of the disaster, the quality of the preparation and the resilience of the society, which facilitate the reconstruction, depend on the participation of the populations. Being able to observe and measure the state of mental health of the population (anxiety, confidence, expectations, ...) and to identify the points of controversy and the content of the discourse, are necessary to support measures designed to encourage this participation. Social media, and in particular Twitter, offer valuable resources for researching this discourse. The objective of this empirical study is to reconstruct a micro history of users' reactions to the pandemic as they share them on social networks. The general method used comes from new processing techniques derived from Natural Language Processing (NLP). Three analysis methods are used to process the corpus: analysis of the temporal evolution of term occurrences; creation of dynamic semantic maps to identify co-occurrences; analysis of topics using the SVM method. The main empirical result is that the mask emerges as a central figure of discourse, at least in the discourse produced by certain social media. The retrospective analysis of the phenomenon allows us to explain what made the mask a focal point not only in conversation, but also in behaviors. Its value resides less in its functional qualities than in its ability to fix attention and organize living conditions under the threat of pandemic.
    Keywords: Covid-19,Twitter feed,NLP methods
    Date: 2021–01–29
  41. By: Loïc Berger (University of Lille - IESES School of Management; CNRS; RFF-CMCC European Institute on Economics and the Environment); Nicolas Berger (London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine - Faculty of Public Health and Policy; Sciensano); Valentina Bosetti (RFF-CMCC European Institute on Economics and the Environment’ Bocconi University - Department of Economics and IGIER); Itzhak Gilboa (HEC; Tel Aviv University - Eitan Berglas School of Economics); Lars Peter Hansen (University of Chicago - Department of Economics; University of Chicago - Department of Statistics; University of Chicago - Booth School of Business); Christopher Jarvis (London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine - Department of Infectious Disease Epidemiology); Massimo Marinacci (University of Bacconi - Department of Decision Sciences and IGIER); Richard D. Smith (University of Exeter - College of Medicine and Health; London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine - Faculty of Public Health and Policy)
    Abstract: Policymaking during a pandemic can be extremely challenging. As COVID-19 is a new disease and its global impacts are unprecedented, decisions need to be made in a highly uncertain, complex and rapidly changing environment. In such a context, in which human lives and the economy are at stake, we argue that using ideas and constructs from modern decision theory, even informally, will make policymaking more a responsible and transparent process.
    Keywords: Model uncertainty, ambiguity, robustness, decision rules
    Date: 2020

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