Impacts of State Reopening Policy on Human Mobility

64 Pages Posted: 26 May 2020

See all articles by Thuy Dieu Nguyen

Thuy Dieu Nguyen

Indiana University Bloomington

Sumedha Gupta

Department of Economics, IUPUI

Martin Andersen

UNC Greensboro

Ana Bento

Indiana University

Kosali Ilayperuma Simon

Indiana University Bloomington - School of Public & Environmental Affairs (SPEA); National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

Coady Wing

Indiana University

Date Written: May 2020

Abstract

This study quantifies the effect of state reopening policies on daily mobility, travel, and mixing behavior during the COVID-19 pandemic. We harness cell device signal data to examine the effects of the timing and pace of reopening plans in different states. We quantify the increase in mobility patterns during the reopening phase by a broad range of cell-device-based metrics. Soon (four days) after reopening, we observe a 6% to 8% mobility increase. In addition, we find that temperature and precipitation are strongly associated with increased mobility across counties. The mobility measures that reflect visits to a greater variety of locations responds the most to reopening policies, while total time in vs. outside the house remains unchanged. The largest increases in mobility occur in states that were late adopters of closure measures, suggesting that closure policies may have represented more of a binding constraint in those states. Together, these four observations provide an assessment of the extent to which people in the U.S. are resuming movement and physical proximity as the COVID-19 pandemic continues.

Suggested Citation

Nguyen, Thuy Dieu and Gupta, Sumedha and Andersen, Martin and Bento, Ana and Simon, Kosali Ilayperuma and Wing, Coady, Impacts of State Reopening Policy on Human Mobility (May 2020). NBER Working Paper No. w27235, Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=3609688

Thuy Dieu Nguyen (Contact Author)

Indiana University Bloomington ( email )

Sumedha Gupta

Department of Economics, IUPUI ( email )

425 University Boulevard
Indianapolis, IN 46202-5140
Germany

Martin Andersen

UNC Greensboro ( email )

Greensboro, NC 27402-6165
United States
3363343904 (Phone)

HOME PAGE: http://https://sites.google.com/site/msandersen/

Ana Bento

Indiana University

Kosali Ilayperuma Simon

Indiana University Bloomington - School of Public & Environmental Affairs (SPEA) ( email )

1315 East Tenth Street
Bloomington, IN 47405
United States

National Bureau of Economic Research (NBER)

1050 Massachusetts Avenue
Cambridge, MA 02138
United States

Coady Wing

Indiana University ( email )

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