COVID-19 Social Protection Responses in Southeast Asia
- PUBLISHED: September 2023
- SUBJECT LISTING: Asian Studies / Southeast Asia, Health
- BIBLIOGRAPHIC INFORMATION: 368 Pages, 6 x 9 in, 76 b&w illus., 30 tables
- ISBN: 9786162151941
- Publisher: Silkworm Books
Who Cares? presents findings on the social protection response to the COVID-19 pandemic in six Southeast Asian countries: Indonesia, Malaysia, Singapore, the Philippines, Thailand, and Vietnam. After a regional overview, country-specific chapters narrate the pandemic's unfolding, public health measures taken to contain it, and economic impacts on different demographics and assesses the effectiveness of social welfare programs. Collectively, the research demonstrates that social protections have been a secondary concern in policy making and resource allocation. Moreover, program details disclose entrenched limitations and biases: privileges for civil servants and formal sector employees; inadequate or nonexistent allowances for the poor, informal and migrant workers, and those outside the labor market; and greater economic vulnerability among women and other marginalized groups.
Ultimately, this work highlights the paradox that crises disproportionately affect the most socially deprived, yet they are the ones less socially protected. Tackling this issue demands change at the structural level—change that can only be brought about by acknowledging the socioeconomic and political values that shape societal systems.
Authors & Contributors
Rosalia Sciortino holds professorships in social sciences and international development at Mahidol and Chulalongkorn Universities. She is founder and executive director of SEA Junction, a Southeast Asia–focused arts and culture organization. She previously served as regional director for Southeast Asia at the International Development Research Centre and the Rockefeller Foundation. Contributors: Bagus Aryo, Jose Jowel Canuday, Stephanie Chok, Jessica Sandra Claudio, Mai Tuyet Hanh, Johanna Debora Imelda, Rapeepun Jommaroeng, Nguyen Thi Thai Lan, Dang Kim Khanh Ly, Bui Thanh Minh, Isaac Neo, Heong Hong Por, Melissa Quetulio-Navarra, Fabio Saini, Teeranong Sakulsri, and Luong Bich Thuy