COVID-19, crisis responses, and public policies: from the persistence of inequalities to the importance of policy design

Daniel BÉLAND, Jingwei Alex HE, M. RAMESH

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlespeer-review

11 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

The coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic has once again highlighted the importance of social inequalities during major crises, a reality that has clear implications for public policy. In this introductory article to the thematic issue of Policy and Society on COVID-19, inequalities, and public policies, we provide an overview of the nexus between crisis and inequality before exploring its importance for the study of policy stability and change, with a particular focus on policy design. Here, we stress the persistence of inequalities during major crises before exploring how the COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the need to focus on these inequalities when the time comes to design policies in response to such crises. Paying close attention to the design of these policies is essential for the study of, and fight against, social inequalities in times of crisis. Both during and beyond crises, policy design should emphasize tackling with inequalities. This is the case because current design choices shape future patterns of social inequality. Copyright © 2022 The Author(s). Published by Oxford University Press.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)187-198
JournalPolicy and Society
Volume41
Issue number2
Early online dateMay 2022
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2022

Citation

Béland, D., He, A. J., & Ramesh, M. (2022). COVID-19, crisis responses, and public policies: from the persistence of inequalities to the importance of policy design. Policy and Society, 41(2), 187-198. doi: 10.1093/polsoc/puac021

Keywords

  • Crisis
  • Inequality
  • Comparative public policy
  • COVID-19
  • Policy design

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