Korean Response to the COVID-19 Pandemic: Information, Intervention and Social Costs

Author Name KWON Hyeog Ug (Faculty Fellow, RIETI) / YoungGak KIM (Senshu University)
Creation Date/NO. February 2021 21-P-004
Research Project Capital Accumulation and Productivity Growth after the COVID-19 Crisis
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Korea has been described as one of the rare countries that effectively responded to the COVID-19 pandemic and which succeeded in minimizing the damage to human life and the economy. Korea responded to the crisis through the so-called 3T (Testing, Tracing, Treatment) method by collecting, integrating and disclosing information, instead of utilizing non-medical intervention policies (such as lockdown and entry ban from foreign countries) that would have withered economic activity. Such responses to maximize the use of medical resources have contributed significantly to minimizing the loss of life and economic damage caused by COVID-19. They have also left behind future challenges and social costs associated with invasion of privacy, direct intervention and social control over the behavior of economic agents.