Skip to content

Research Paper CEPR Discussion Paper Series DP17067

Search and reallocation in the Covid-19 pandemic: evidence from the UK


Publication date

Feb 2022


The impact of the Covid-19 pandemic on the UK labour market has been extremely heterogeneous across occupation and industrial sectors. Using novel data on job search, we document how individuals adjust their job search behaviour in response to changing employment patterns across occupations and industries in the UK. We observe that workers changed their search direction in favour of expanding occupations and industries as the pandemic developed. This suggests job searchers do respond to occupation-wide and industry-wide conditions in addition to idiosyncratic career concerns. However, non-employed workers and those with low education levels are more attached to their previous occupations and more likely to target declining ones. We also see workers from declining occupations making fewer transitions to expanding occupations than those who start in such occupations, despite targeting these jobs relatively frequently. This suggests those at the margins of the labour market may be least able to escape occupations that declined during the pandemic.




Labour Market, Unemployment, Economics, Health, and Covid 19


Related publications

  1. Job search and mismatch during the Covid-19 pandemic

    Carlos Carrillo-Tudela, Camila Comunello, Alex Clymo, et al.

    1. Labour Market
    2. Unemployment
    3. Economics
    4. Health
    5. Covid 19


Research home

Research home


Latest findings, new research

Publications search

Search all research by subject and author


Researchers discuss their findings and what they mean for society


Background and context, methods and data, aims and outputs


Conferences, seminars and workshops

Survey methodology

Specialist research, practice and study

Taking the long view

ISER's annual report


Key research themes and areas of interest