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Markkula Center for Applied Ethics

Translating Epidemiology to Just Workplace Return Policies

Ann Mongoven

Ann Mongoven is the associate director of Health Care Ethics at the Markkula Center for Applied Ethics. Views are her own.

Too much public discussion on when and how to re-open economies has invoked either solely epidemiological data (how coronavirus is spread), or solely economic data (unemployment rates, stock market indexes, etc.). However, the key to just return-to-work policies is linking the two judiciously and creatively. 

The following chart is intended as suggestive. It directly links epidemiological points about the pandemic to back-to-work-and-public-life considerations, and flags helpful examples. The examples demonstrate serious efforts to consider epidemiology as part of thinking through the ethics of returning to work, school, and open economies. Some of the return-to-work examples are issue-overviews; others raise ethical challenges; others describe pilot-programs.

Apr 30, 2020

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