“COVID-19 and the Structural Crisis of Liberal Democracies: Determinants and Consequences of the Governance of Pandemic”, Luca Alteri, Louisa Parks, Luca Raffini and Tommaso Vitale (Sciences Po, France)

The pandemic caused by the rapid spread of the Covid-19 virus has revealed impacts well beyond those linked to health. Indeed, it has established itself as what Mauss called a “total social fact”, an event that affects every single aspect of society. The epidemic has not only profoundly changed our daily lives and behaviour, but has and will continue to have far-reaching economic and political impacts. A closer look at the social, economic and political consequences of the pandemic suggests that these are not directly attributable to its epidemiological features, but are instead shaped by the ways in which national and local societies reacted to it. The dynamics generated by these reactions hold the key to understanding the vulnerability and non-sustainability of the current social and economic model, and the fragility of the political and economic institutions that represent it.

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