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Research project

Rewriting the Social Contract over the Great Lockdown

This study takes up the gauntlet of re-assessing the social contract in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic. The empirics encompass policy responses, from lockdown measures, health emergency, social distancing, economic support for industries, social security provision, labour market re-regulation, and strategies to maintain human capital, to critical macro interventions and coordination by the EU and the ECB. Part 1 examines macro trends resulting from the pandemic, the lockdown measures and the socioeconomic mitigating interventions subsequently implemented. Part 2 analyses country-specific responses to the pandemic for 12 EU member states (already under study in a project on welfare lessons from the Great Recession) and using the YouGov/EUI survey on European solidarity. Part 3 investigates EU crisis-management efforts. Part 4 considers implications for welfare policy continuity and change, including how and when a newly calibrated social contract might be anchored in domestic and EU-level policy.

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