The COVID-19 pandemic is expected to have a significant impact on our daily lives even after the virus itself is less of a threat. Our comprehensive survey of Chicagoans shows implications for how people will work and travel, and how governments should handle future pandemics. A need for flexible, effective policies that address both health concerns and social needs such as equity and environmentalism are strongly recommended.
Attitudes are increasingly recognized as important predictors for behavior. Our survey used a series of 39 questions to sort respondents into five personality types. We find that preferences for suburban living and in-person interaction, as well as one’s level of concern for COVID-19, are important predictors of post-pandemic behavior. An understanding of these attitudes is critical to the COVID-19 response.
COVID Future project co-leader Abolfazl (Kouros) Mohammadian spearheaded the organization of a full 2-days of presentations on the topic of COVID and transport at the recent virtual “Bridging Transport Researchers” transportation conference. Many other team members also presented work and/or moderated sessions. Recordings of all of the presentations are available on YouTube, with direct links … Continue reading COVID Future Project Featured at Recent Virtual Transportation Conference
Universities are at a crossroads as they prepare for the fall semester. While the COVID-19 response of the spring 2020 semester was received poorly by students, universities have the opportunity to improve upon these changes in the coming year. Keys to student satisfaction will include establishing open lines of communication between students and professors, and creating engaging classes.
COVID-19 has necessitated a transition from in-person to online shopping for groceries, retail, and restaurant meals. We find that the popularity of online shopping is overall likely to persist past the pandemic, but restaurants are unlikely to see the takeout or dine-in patronage necessary to survive the pandemic untouched. There is a wide variety in how popular different types of online shopping (e.g. groceries and non-groceries) are expected to be in the future.
On July 24, I contributed to a story that was featured on the Conversation website: The office is dead! Long live the office in a post-pandemic world. For my portion of this piece, I used our data to provide some data-informed context to the discussion about what work arrangements might look like for office workers … Continue reading Findings featured in Conversation story
Preliminary results indicate that COVID-19 will have lasting effects on our day-to-day travel. Transit in particular has experienced the biggest decrease in usage during the pandemic, but motorized travel is generally expected to become less popular in the long term. Meanwhile, biking and walking are expected to become increasingly prevalent as substitutes for car and transit trips.
Airplane travel has been dramatically reduced during the pandemic. We examine the flying habits of both business and personal travelers, and conclude that flying is likely to decrease for both groups (but more so for business travelers) in the long run. The ability to conduct meetings remotely and concerns about the safety of flying in an enclosed space with strangers are major contributors to this trend.
How is COVID-19 affecting the workplace? Initial results from our survey show that working from home is becoming more popular and probably will remain commonplace – though far from universal – after the pandemic. We are just starting to learn about the effects this trend may have on worker productivity and society as a whole.