COVID-19 AND HUMAN DEVELOPMENT: Assessing the Crisis, Envisioning the Recovery
Jun 3, 2020
The COVID-19 pandemic is unleashing a human development crisis. On some dimensions of human development, conditions today are equivalent to levels of deprivation last seen in the mid-1980s. But the crisis is hitting hard on all of human development’s constitutive elements: income, health and education. This, not counting less visible indirect effects, including increased domestic violence, yet to be fully documented. The pandemic was superimposed on unresolved tensions between people and technology, between people and the planet, between the haves and the have-nots. These tensions were already shaping a new generation of inequalities— pertaining to enhanced capabilities, the new necessities of the 21st century, as defined in the 2019 Human Development Report. But the response to the crisis can shape how those tensions are addressed and whether inequalities in human development are reduced.