As the United States and the rest of the world confront the global health threat of Covid-19, how do citizens view the fundamental trade-offs between health, liberty, and economic well-being? As these tradeoffs become particularly salient during a pandemic, what are citizens willing to sacrifice and what are they steadfast in supporting no matter what the circumstance? How does this vary across countries and geographies within countries and what is unique about preferences of citizens of the United States? Finally, what factors may shape these preferences? To answer these questions, we will launch a large scale, representative cross-country survey at various phases of the Covid-19 pandemic. The survey is designed with a heavier sampling focus on the United States, while also covering Italy, the United Kingdom, France, Germany, South Korea, and China. This survey precisely measures citizens’ preferences over public health policies, civil liberties, and economic outcomes, as well as their evolution over time. Moreover, the survey allows us to leverage both quasi-experimental and experimental variations to understand factors that shape citizens’ preferences.
Prize Fellow in History, Economics and Politics, Department of Economics, National Bureau of Economic Research