Why a Pandemic Needs Social Science

Contenuto principale dell'articolo

Stefan Kolev
Erwin Dekker


This essay explores what insights about dealing with a pandemic can be learned from political economy. We argue that epidemiology and political economy share many theoretical and policy challenges. Experts in both fields face similar dilemmas in positioning themselves vis-à-vis the state and society, while epidemiologic and market processes are only partially controllable. A key similarity is that both disciplines have to deal with incomplete and dispersed knowledge and with decision-making in the face of radical uncertainty. In this perspective, the cultivation of learning processes for all players in society to live with risks and to constantly readjust trade-offs constitutes the key channel out of the Corona pandemic. This also implies that heterogenous groups learn and adjust differently, and that experts should seek to be part of this learning process. We also address the challenges of states of exception, especially their tendency to absolutizes one type of risk in society above all others.

Dettagli dell'articolo

Come citare
Kolev , S. ., & Dekker , E. . (2021). Why a Pandemic Needs Social Science. Power and Democracy, 2(2), 29–44. Recuperato da https://ojs.aduei.com/index.php/pad/article/view/19
Sezione Monografica