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College of Arts & Sciences
Hazards & Vulnerability Research Institute

Disparities in Response, Impact, and Recovery from the COVID-19 Pandemic in the United States

Lead Investigator: Dr. Susan L. Cutter

This project examines the inequality in response, impact, and livelihood recovery for the millions of Americans affected by the COVID-19 pandemic. The project analyzes spatial and temporal data on response and impacts (confirmed cases, mortality, protective action guidance) to ascertain whether the observed county geographic patterns correspond to underlying social vulnerability and disaster resilience using public data from January 1, 2020 through December 31, 2020.  The research futher examines geographic disparities in livelihood recovery, especially so-called "cold spots", where unemployment does not return to pre-pandemic levels.  South Carolina is used as a test case for the methodology using the March-Labor Day time frame. 


Huang, Qian, Sarah Jackson, Sahar Derakhshan, Logan Lee, Erika Pham, Amber Jackson, and Susan L. Cutter, 2021. Urban-rural differences in COVID-19 exposures and outcomes in the South: A preliminary analysis of South Carolina. PLOS ONE  Online February 3, 2021.


 This work is partially supported by a COVID-19 Research Initiative grant from the Office of the Vice President for Research at the University of South Carolina.