Office of Research-Innocenti Discussion Paper

COVID-19 and Children, in the North and in the South

Published on 20 April 2020

This paper aims to document the likely direct and indirect impacts of the COVID-19 crisis in developed and developing countries. It also aims to identify potential urgent measures to alleviate such impacts on children.

Thirty-three years after the UNICEF report, ‘Adjustment with a Human Face’, the authors warn of the effects of the pandemic which are likely to be considerable and comparable to the recession and debt crisis of the 1980s. The heavy costs for children can only be avoided with systematic and concerted efforts on the part of governments and the international community, to provide extensive financial and social support for the poor, and to invest in the health and education systems, in order to offset the negative impact of the virus-induced recession.

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Cornia, G. A.; Jolly, R.; Stewart, F. (2020) 'COVID-19 and children, in the North and in the South', Innocenti Discussion Papers 2020-02, UNICEF Office of Research, Innocenti: Florence


Richard Jolly

Research Associate

Giovanni Andrea Cornia

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