The project, Survive, Thrive, or Deprive? Drivers and Outcomes of Resilience During the Covid-19 Pandemic in Malawi, examines why some individuals and communities respond better than others to crises, and the longer-term effects of crises on governance and welfare. Examining community governance in Malawi during the Covid pandemic, it aims to answer three questions:
1) What explains when and how communities implement and enforce policies to mitigate the pandemic's negative effects? When/why does this impact poverty and inequality?
2) How do community factors and individuals' characteristics affect how individuals manage crises?
3) How has the pandemic altered community social ties and authority?
To answer these questions, we draw on previous findings relating to resilience, public health, and governance, and leverage unique panel data and case studies from Malawi. The panel data includes face-to-face (F2F) surveys with households and elites conducted in 2019 before the pandemic, three telephone surveys conducted during the pandemic, and a post-pandemic F2F survey. As one of the poorest populations in the world, with clearly defined and gendered local authority structures, Malawi is particularly well-suited to provide crisis response insights at individual and community levels. Moreover, the data allows for pathbreaking research, as this is – to our knowledge – the most rigorous, sustained examination of crisis response. The findings will yield theoretical understandings of resilience, health crisis response, and authority while supporting policymakers and development specialists to alleviate poverty and other negative consequences of crises.
This project is supported by the Survive, Thrive, or Deprive? Drivers and Outcomes of Resilience During the Covid-19 Pandemic in Malawi grant (Vetenskapsrådet – 2021-04651),