Thematic Paper: A brief radiography of the social and territorial consequences of two years in the COVID-19 pandemic

Is there a pattern of diffusion for COVID-19 across European regions, and how has this evolved since its onset? Are there specific territorial and/or socioeconomic characteristics that can entail a higher risk of death/more severe course of the disease and/or higher probabilities of negative socio-economic impacts? And what is the socioeconomic impact of the COVID-19 crisis at the regional level, as each of the European regions has responded to it in distinctive ways?

Building on the evidence produced within the ESPON TERRCOV project, this paper will display, at a more detailed territorial level, the impact on poverty and employment as a result of subsequent lockdown measures. The final section of this report is dedicated to presenting a post-COVID-19 recovery scenario that has tested the effects of the NextGenerationEU (NGEU) funding on employment at regional level, a scenario produced within the EU-wide ESPON project analysing Interregional Relations in Europe (ESPON, 2022a).