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Optimal Lockdown in a Commuting Network

Author

Listed:
  • Pablo Fajgelbaum
  • Amit Khandelwal
  • Wookun Kim
  • Cristiano Mantovani
  • Edouard Schaal

Abstract

We study optimal dynamic lockdowns against Covid-19 within a commuting network. Our framework integrates canonical spatial epidemiology and trade models, and is applied to cities with varying initial viral spread: Seoul, Daegu and NYC-Metro. Spatial lockdowns achieve substantially smaller income losses than uniform lockdowns. In NYM and Daegu—with large initial shocks—the optimal lockdown restricts inflows to central districts before gradual relaxation, while in Seoul it imposes low temporal but large spatial variation. Actual commuting reductions were too weak in central locations in Daegu and NYM, and too strong across Seoul.

Suggested Citation

  • Pablo Fajgelbaum & Amit Khandelwal & Wookun Kim & Cristiano Mantovani & Edouard Schaal, 2020. "Optimal Lockdown in a Commuting Network," NBER Working Papers 27441, National Bureau of Economic Research, Inc.
  • Handle: RePEc:nbr:nberwo:27441
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    JEL classification:

    • C6 - Mathematical and Quantitative Methods - - Mathematical Methods; Programming Models; Mathematical and Simulation Modeling
    • R38 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Real Estate Markets, Spatial Production Analysis, and Firm Location - - - Government Policy
    • R4 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - Transportation Economics

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