Mandatory social distancing measures in Brazil: a comparative analysis of state governments’ responses to the first and second waves of the COVID-19 pandemic

Produced by: 
International Policy Center for Inclusive Growth
Available from: 
June 2021
Paper author(s): 
Rodrigo Fracalossi de Moraes (Ipea)
Education - Health

In the absence of a nationwide social distancing policy in Brazil, state governments played a central role in the adoption and enforcement of these measures. The first state to implement them was the Federal District, on 11 March 2020. In the following two weeks, all Brazilian states adopted mandatory social distancing measures, with varying degrees of strictness and effectiveness. The decentralised implementation of social distancing measures slightly complicates the assessment of their strictness, given that states adopted different sets of rules. Yet, measuring and comparing them is critical for estimating at least three of their potential impacts: i) impacts on the dynamics of the pandemic in a given geographical area; ii) the extent to which they induced behavioural change in the population; and iii) their socioeconomic impacts.


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