Economics Seminar Series

Philipp Kircher, Cornell University

An economic model of the Covid-19 pandemic with young and old agents: Behavior, testing and policies

Dr. Philipp Kircher.

Dr. Philipp Kircher

This paper investigates the importance of the age composition in the Covid-19 pandemic. We augment a standard SIR epidemiological model with individual choices on work and non-work social distancing. Infected individuals are initially uncertain unless they are tested. We find that older individuals socially distance themselves substantially in equilibrium. An optimal lockdown then confines the young more. The strictness and economic costs of the optimal lockdown depend on whether or not individuals can telework. Testing and quarantines save lives, even if conducted just on the young. When some testing is available, the optimal lockdown is much lighter and GDP rises even compared with a no-policy benchmark.


DATE: Friday, March 11th, 2022

TIME: 3:30-5:00pm


Meeting ID: 987 7371 8035

Passcode: 146660