New publication series on Covid-19 responses

Dr. Tim Dorlach
Dr. Tim Dorlach

Dear Tim, in a few days time our first country report on social policy responses to the Covid 19 pandemic will be published. Please explain briefly what it is about.

Tim Dorlach: The contributions to our new series of country reports analyse the social policy measures that national governments have taken so far to mitigate the negative social impacts of this global pandemic. Each report consists of an essay and an appendix of data on key social policy reforms. In the first round, the focus is initially on countries of the Global South. Researchers still know far too little about the social policy responses to the pandemic beyond Europe and North America.

How many country reports will be released in the series and who writes them?

Tim Dorlach: About 30 country reports will be published in the coming months. These reports will be written by some members of the Collaborative Research Centre 1342 as well as by many members of our international network of country experts. This network was initiated to enable the CRC to conduct global social policy research in close cooperation with local experts.

The corona pandemic is far from over, and the same applies to its social impacts and the associated social policy responses of nation states. Will there therefore be something like a follow-up report for the countries - "Covid19 Social Policy Responses in 2021" or similar?

Tim Dorlach: That is the plan. After all, the medium- and long-term social policy responses to the pandemic will probably be different from the initial short-term responses in the first months after the outbreak of the pandemic. On the one hand, governments will probably have to find more structural welfare state solutions, but on the other hand, they may soon run out of money to do so.

The Covid-19 country reports were (of course) not included in the original programme of CRC 1342. Can you briefly describe how this project came about?

Tim Dorlach: The pandemic has of course taken us all by surprise and thrown us off track. In many parts, the pandemic has also severely impaired work. On the other hand, with the CRC, the University of Bremen is also ideally prepared to investigate the social impact of the pandemic and social policy solutions from a global perspective. This additional project was therefore launched at relatively short notice.


Tim Dorlach is a Postdoctoral Researcher at SOCIUM. His current research focuses on social and healthcare policy in the newly industrialising countries. He tweets at @TimDorlach.