Solidarity in times of crisis: perceptions of deservingness during the pandemic in Switzerland Dirigé par Flavia Fossati

"Solidarity in times of crisis: perceptions of deservingness during the pandemic in Switzerland" is a project launched by the Swiss Graduate School of Public Administration (IDHEAP) , nccr on the move and the LIVES Center following the COVID-19 crisis. 

This project focus on the implications of the pandemic and of its economic fallout on perceptions of deservingness for different types of social rights. This project has two main axis: the first one study deservingness perceptions regarding two different domains of state help (services in the health care sector and access to social benefits for self-employed) and the second one extend the deservingness framework to study wether particular groups of mobile individuals should be entitled to be (internationally) mobile and more specifically to be allowed to access to Switzerland. 

The project aims at making substantial and innovative contributions to the literature on the following research areas:

  • First, the pandemic and the possibility that there are insufficient healthcare resources, raises the issue of how to manage access to healthcare, in particular intensive care unit beds or vaccines. What principles do people rely upon when making these allocation decisions in a context of scarcity? What does the general public think of ethical guidelines as they are applied by medical societies (e.g. treatment decisions based on the health prognosis)? Does (im)migrant status or ethnicity matter in the allocation decision, and if yes in what ways?
  • Second, the economic consequences of the pandemic created a new group of people who are at risk of poverty and thus needing state support. These include self-employed people and irregular workers. How deserving are these groups of people perceived to be? Again, does (im)migrant status or ethnicity matter regarding these deservingness perceptions? Are undeclared workers considered deserving of state help under the exceptional circumstances created by the pandemic?
  • Third, the pandemic has triggered a major reduction in international travel opportunities. Most countries in Europe and beyond have closed their borders for the majority of travelers, but not for everyone. Cross border mobility, in this context, becomes a “scarce” good. How is it allocated? Who deserves to be mobile (and allowed to enter Switzerland) in the context of the pandemic?

As part of this project, a survey has been completed between April 22 and May 4 2020. You can access some of the data and explore it by yourself with the study interactive data exploration tool.

More information available on the IDHEAP's website.

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