Using Difference-in-Differences to Identify Causal Effects of COVID-19 Policies

  • Andrew Goodman-Bacon Vanderbilt University and NBER
  • Jan Marcus University of Hamburg
Keywords: difference-in-differences; non-pharmaceutical interventions; COVID-19; causal inference

Abstract

Policymakers have implemented a wide range of non-pharmaceutical interventions to fight the spread of COVID-19. Variation in policies across jurisdictions and over time strongly suggests a difference-in-differences (DD) research design to estimate causal effects of counter-COVID measures. We discuss threats to the validity of these DD designs and make recommendations about how researchers can avoid bias, interpret results accurately, and provide sound guidance to policymakers seeking to protect public health and facilitate an eventual economic recovery.
Published
2020-06-02
How to Cite
Goodman-Bacon, A., & Marcus, J. (2020). Using Difference-in-Differences to Identify Causal Effects of COVID-19 Policies. Survey Research Methods, 14(2), 153-158. https://doi.org/10.18148/srm/2020.v14i2.7723