The COVID-19 pandemic caused a massive collapse in human capital at critical moments in the life cycle, derailing development for millions of children and young people in low- and middle-income countries, according to the first analysis of global data on young people who were under the age of 25 at the onset of the pandemic.
The new World Bank report, Collapse and Recovery: How COVID-19 Eroded Human Capital and What to Do About It, analyzes global data on the pandemic’s impacts on young people at key developmental stages: early childhood (0-5 years), school age (6-14 years), and youth (15-24 years). It found that today’s students could lose up to 10% of their future earnings due to COVID-19-induced education shocks. And the cognitive deficit in today’s toddlers could translate into a 25% decline in earnings when these children are adults.
Human capital—the knowledge, skills, and health that people accumulate over their lives—is key to unlocking a child’s potential and enabling countries to achieve a resilient recovery and strong future growth. Yet the pandemic shuttered schools and places of employment and disrupted other key services that protect and promote human capital, such as maternal and child health care and job training.
At this online seminar, the co-authors of the report, Alaka Holla, SIEF Program Manager, and Joana Silva Senior Economist, Office of the Chief Economist for Human Development, presented the main points.
8am-9am, Wednesday November 29, 2023 (Japan Standard Time)
SIEF Program Manager, World Bank
Senior Economist, Office of the Chief Economist for Human Development, World Bank