Berkeley, California – COVID-19 is not going away, and other dangerous viruses may be coming. This means it’s time to face the grim truth: Many of the pandemic’s effects on our economies and societies will be persistent, even permanent.
Some of these changes are already evident. There is less demand for the services of dine-in restaurants, hotels, airlines, brick-and-mortar retail and large entertainment venues, and fewer employment opportunities in those sectors and facilities. There is more demand for everything online, and for health care, child care and home care services. Substantial numbers of workers therefore will have to move, and new entrants to the labor force will need different sets of skills.