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Coronavirus Economy: Using 'Big Data' To Track The Economic Impact Of The Pandemic

People walk by a closed business on July 21, 2020 in the Brooklyn borough of New York City. (Spencer Platt/Getty Images)
People walk by a closed business on July 21, 2020 in the Brooklyn borough of New York City. (Spencer Platt/Getty Images)

This is a prerecorded broadcast. 

Small businesses are struggling. But what communities are hardest hit? Award-winning economist Raj Chetty shares his surprising findings and insight.


Raj Chetty, professor of economics at Harvard University. Director of “Opportunity Insights,” a research group that’s coming up with new ways to generate and analyze “big data” about the economic impact of the pandemic. (@OppInsights)

Sean Knibb, owner of Knibb Design Interiors and Flowerboy Project, a boutique, café and flower shop in Venice.

Listen: The Extended Cut Of Our Interview With Sean Knibb

From The Reading List

Opportunity Insights: “How Did COVID-19 and Stabilization Policies Affect

Spending and Employment?” — “How has COVID-19 affected our economy and what policies will foster a recovery for all Americans? Government surveys of households and businesses show that COVID-19 reduced GDP and increased unemployment sharply.”

Center For American Progress: “Congress Must Help Rural America Respond to the Coronavirus” — “America has entered the fifth month of the coronavirus pandemic. Daily case counts continue to rise, even as the virus’ spread slows in many other countries around the world.”

Forbes: “Economic Recovery Insights From Raj Chetty’s New Data Sources Drive New Profits” — “Covid-19 sunk economy primarily because of high-income people cutting back on in-person services. That’s a conclusion from Opportunity Insights’ research on spending and employment, which was recently presented by economist Raj Chetty.”

New York Times: “Amid Dire Jobless Numbers, Small-Business Relief Program Nears End” — “In early April, three weeks after Connecticut issued shutdown orders, Ken Bodenstein borrowed $148,000 from the federal government to help cover payroll expenses at the Westport day care center he runs with his wife, Kristen.”

The Atlantic: “The Economist Who Would Fix the American Dream” — “Raj Chetty got his biggest break before his life began. His mother, Anbu, grew up in Tamil Nadu, a tropical state at the southern tip of the Indian subcontinent.”

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