The geography of the COVID-19 crisis in England

A Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS) report on the vulnerability of areas to Covid-19 impacts

The COVID-19 crisis has affected every part of the country – and indeed many other countries

What sets this crisis apart is the many different ways that it is impacting families: while the virus itself is primarily a public health issue, the unprecedented responses it has necessitated mean that this is also very much an economic and a social crisis.

This is not to say that it is equally all of these things to all people – some families, and some areas, will be particularly vulnerable to the virus’s health impacts, while others look to be hit particularly hard on economic or social dimensions.

The IFS report analysis how these different dimensions of the crisis vary around England. They document the geography of the COVID-19 crisis along three dimensions: health, jobs and families. They explore which local authorities (LAs) have residents who are more vulnerable to severe COVID-19 symptoms, because of their age or pre-existing conditions; which LAs have a greater share of workers in shut-down sectors such as retail or hospitality; and which LAs have a greater share of children either eligible for free school meals or receiving children’s social services, who might be at particular educational or social risk from the crisis. The IFS also show how these dimensions of vulnerability in health, jobs and families relate to each other.

The IFS bring these findings together to document the extent to which local areas might be affected along multiple dimensions of the crisis.

The full IFS article and a copy of their report can be accesed here


Sign up to our newsletter to receive all the latest news and updates.