The COVID-19 pandemic has exacerbated existing systemic inequities, with the brunt of its effects felt by Black, Latinx, and low-income communities. But a postpandemic recovery does not have to follow the same path.
As communities across the US begin to recover from the pandemic, policymakers and communities have a once-in-a-generation opportunity to build a more inclusive, more equitable economy and society. To do so, they will need to identify, adapt, and implement strong policies that support inclusivity and expand access to opportunity. Although many of these policy solutions will be homegrown, evidence and inspiration can also come from other countries.
The Urban Institute, with support from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, studied how innovative, effective policies and programs from abroad could inform state and local recovery policies in the US. This work started with two analyses: a demand analysis to identify top policy priorities for an inclusive recovery and a comparative analysis to identify countries that provide the best opportunities to find relevant examples. Based on analysis, the research team developed five briefs examining policies and programs from abroad that could inform US state and local policymaker efforts to support an inclusive recovery:
- a French payroll tax to help increase the supply of affordable housing,
- multiple policies for improving the supply of and access to equity financing,
- a model from Barcelona for improving equitable access to public space,
- an Australian policy that could help improve child care funding, and
- a Welsh program for expanding access to high-speed broadband.
Each brief is accompanied by a one-pager that summarizes key points.