DISCUSSION PAPER

Pathways to regional recovery from COVID-19

4 October 2020

Measures to control the COVID-19 pandemic are generating significant economic consequences nationally and globally. These include significant implications for employment, income and housing security . However, these consequences are geographically uneven. Previous research has found that regional populations are disproportionately older, sicker and poorer, housing markets are smaller and less dynamic, employment tends to be concentrated in certain sectors, and there are fewer economies of scale available to facilitate industry recovery. This means that recovery needs are likely to also vary, and recovery strategies designed for large cities may not work as well in regional economies.

This paper outlines interim findings from research on regional housing and household experiences during the COVID-19 pandemic. Specifically, we found:

  • Government efforts to protect income and housing security have been effective to date.
  • Despite this, there is underlying vulnerability to housing insecurity, especially among young people, migrants, women, single people, and people in casual employment, which requires urgent policy attention.
  • The pre-pandemic shortage of affordable housing continues to threaten long-term housing outcomes. Recovery policy should include increasing social and affordable housing supply alongside targeted employment regeneration and income security.

The full paper is available to download below, with the final report to be published in early 2021.

Pathways to regional recovery from COVID-19

Download discussion paper