Surviving Together: Social Cohesion and Covid-19 Infections and Mortality Across the World Database
This item contains the data for Pacheco-Miranda et al (2022). Surviving Together: Social Cohesion and Covid-19 Infections and Mortality Across the World. Critical Public Health. Details on the data used in the paper can be found in the Metadata file.
Studies of the determinants of the spread and mortality of COVID-19 indicate that the quality of health care systems and government type and capacity have a negligent role in explaining the variation of infection and death rates between countries. Research therefore suggests a role for societal factors, in particular social capital. But its measures vary widely, sometimes including indicators that refer to politics or governance. We clearly distinguish social cohesion from social capital and argue that the first better captures the societal influence on the pandemic, by its concern with the common good and relationships between (rather than within) social groups. We analyze the role of social cohesion in the spread and mortality of COVID-19 in a large cross-country analysis with a comprehensive index and two sub-indices of social cohesion. Moreover, the underlying indicators enable us to study the pathways through which social cohesion is likely to affect COVID-19 outcomes. Contrary to the recent empirical literature we find robust relationships, in particular for intergroup cohesion. Our findings suggest that more cohesive societies, in particular those with less divisiveness between social groups, may be better equipped to reduce the impact of a pandemic.