Economic Complexity Drives COVID-19 Outcomes in UK Local Authorities

43 Pages Posted: 14 Feb 2022 Last revised: 10 May 2022

See all articles by Esmaeil Khedmati Morasae

Esmaeil Khedmati Morasae

University of Exeter

Tahera Ebrahimi

Manchester Metropolitan University

Penny Mealy

University of Oxford - Institute for New Economic Thinking at the Oxford Martin School; University of Oxford - Smith School of Enterprise and the Environment; Bennett Institute for Public Policy

Diane Coyle

Bennett Institute for Public Policy, University of Cambridge

Riccardo Di Clemente

University of Exeter - Department of Mathematics and Computer Science; The Alan Turing Institute

Date Written: February 9, 2022

Abstract

COVID-19 outcomes differ according to socio-economic indicators. In this study, we find there is a specific structure to the differences among UK local authorities, as localities with a lower economic complexity index (ECI) registered significantly higher COVID-19 cases and deaths. We show that the ECI is a predictor of people’s movements, with mobility declining in high ECI localities during the pandemic, but not in low ECI places where a higher proportion of people have high-risk jobs more likely to lead to virus transmission. Local economic structures shape people’s pandemic experiences and this calls for strategies to reduce spatial inequalities.

Note: Funding: This research did not receive any specific grant from funding agencies in the public, commercial, or not-for-profit sectors.

Declaration of Interests: The authors report there are no competing interests to declare.

Keywords: COVID-19, Economic complexity, Place, Mortality, Morbidity, Mobility

Suggested Citation

Khedmati Morasae, Esmaeil and Ebrahimi, Tahera and Mealy, Penny and Coyle, Diane and Di Clemente, Riccardo, Economic Complexity Drives COVID-19 Outcomes in UK Local Authorities (February 9, 2022). Available at SSRN: https://ssrn.com/abstract=4030739 or http://dx.doi.org/10.2139/ssrn.4030739

Esmaeil Khedmati Morasae (Contact Author)

University of Exeter ( email )

CEMPS
Exeter, EX4 4QF
Great Britain

Tahera Ebrahimi

Manchester Metropolitan University ( email )

United Kingdom

Penny Mealy

University of Oxford - Institute for New Economic Thinking at the Oxford Martin School ( email )

Eagle House
Walton Well Road
Oxford, OX2 6ED
United Kingdom

University of Oxford - Smith School of Enterprise and the Environment ( email )

United Kingdom

Bennett Institute for Public Policy

7 West Rd, Cambridge
Cambridge, CB3 9DT
Great Britain

Diane Coyle

Bennett Institute for Public Policy, University of Cambridge ( email )

Alison Richard Building
7 West Road
Cambridge, CB3 9DT
Great Britain

Riccardo Di Clemente

University of Exeter - Department of Mathematics and Computer Science ( email )

Exeter, EX4 4QF
United States

The Alan Turing Institute ( email )

British Library
96 Euston Road
London, NW1 2DB
United Kingdom

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