Government Intervention, Human Mobility, and COVID-19: A Causal Pathway Analysis from 121 Countries
Xing Ge and
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Feng Wang: School of Economics and Finance, Xi’an Jiaotong University, Xi’an 710061, China
Xing Ge: School of Economics and Finance, Xi’an Jiaotong University, Xi’an 710061, China
Danwen Huang: School of Economics and Finance, Xi’an Jiaotong University, Xi’an 710061, China
Sustainability, 2022, vol. 14, issue 6, 1-26
Based on data from 121 countries, the study assesses the dynamic effect and causality path of the government epidemic prevention policies and human mobility behaviors on the growth rates of COVID-19 new cases and deaths. Our results find that both policies and behaviors influenced COVID-19 cases and deaths. The direct effect of policies on COVID-19 was more than the indirect effect. Policies influence behaviors, and behaviors react spontaneously to information. Further, masks give people a false sense of security and increase mobility. The close public transport policy increased COVID-19 new cases. We also conducted sensitivity analysis and found that some policies hold robustly, such as the policies of school closing, restrictions on gatherings, stay-at-home requirements, international travel controls, facial coverings, and vaccination. The counterfactual tests suggest that, as of early March 2021, if governments had mandated masking policies early in the epidemic, the cases and deaths would have been reduced by 18% and 14% separately. If governments had implemented vaccination policies early in the pandemic, the cases and deaths would have been reduced by 93% and 62%, respectively. Without public transportation closures, cases and deaths would have been reduced by 40% and 10%, respectively.
Keywords: COVID-19; policies; human mobility behaviors; dynamic effect; masks; causality (search for similar items in EconPapers)
JEL-codes: O13 Q Q0 Q2 Q3 Q5 Q56 (search for similar items in EconPapers)
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Persistent link: https://EconPapers.repec.org/RePEc:gam:jsusta:v:14:y:2022:i:6:p:3694-:d:776292
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