Social Capital in the Response to COVID-19

Nicholas Pitas, Colin Ehmer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Social capital provides a number of benefits during crisis scenarios, and high social capital communities respond more efficaciously than those with low social capital. With this in mind, we argue that the response to and recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic may be hampered in many American communities by deficiencies or disruptions in social capital brought about by physical distancing. Drawing on evidence from past crises, we recommend individuals, communities, and government institutions work to strengthen and expand social networks. A failure to do so will exact a toll in terms of human morbidity and mortality and exacerbate the current disaster.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)942-944
Number of pages3
JournalAmerican Journal of Health Promotion
Issue number8
StatePublished - Nov 1 2020
Externally publishedYes


  • COVID-19
  • community
  • culture change
  • environments
  • health disparities
  • health policy
  • opportunity
  • settings
  • social support
  • specific
  • strategies
  • supportive

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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