Researching the impacts of COVID-19 in The Hague

The Hague - city bench - close up

The International Institute of Social Studies (ISS) is engaged and embedded in the city of The Hague, and enhancing this local engagement is an explicit objective of the current ISS strategy.

The Local Engagement Facility (LEF) fund was set up in  2020 to encourage and formalize collaboration between ISS and other societal actors in the city of The Hague, including both local communities and formal institutions and organizations.

Researching the social impacts of COVID-19

The COVID-19 pandemic has already had a huge and long-lasting impact on society and will continue to do so for at least another year: on the economy, on social wellbeing and on political choices.

The impact will be different for various groups, communities, vulnerable people, people with their own businesses, healthcare, education and youth.

Two new research projects started started in 2021, embedded in the Erasmus Initiative Vital Cities and Citizens under the theme Resilient Cities and People.

Frugal innovation during the COVID-19 pandemic

Finding smart, simple and affordable solutions to overcome resource constraints

LEF - Frugal innovation during COVID-19 - 1-5m signage

Building urban resilience through urban agriculture?

Urban farming as a sustainable solution to cities’ over-dependence on international food chains

LEF - urban farms - Allotment garden_cherry blossom

The impact of COVID-19 on marginalized and overlooked communities

ISS selected four projects in 2020 particularly focusing on the impact of COVID-19 and the measures taken by marginalized or (often) overlooked groups of people. These four projects make use of ISS expertise in development and social justice to inform and impact the lives of people who live on our doorstep.

About the LEF fund

The goal of the LEF fund is to:

  • facilitate long-term collaborations with organizations in The Hague;
  • establish opportunities for student involvement through their courses or as volunteering opportunities; foster collaboration between colleagues and projects within this fund;
  • and, most notably, show how engaged research happens at the ISS.

As part of the LEF fund, the project researchers are encouraged to collaborate amongst each other to facilitate more synergies between the projects, allowing for not just further reflections and conclusions to be drawn, but to further stimulate collaboration and solidarity between organizations in The Hague.

The aim is to ensure that the ways in which local communities in The Hague are affected by covid-19 are not just exposed but are also supported by the research and the collaborations and networks brought about by the research.

Vital Cities and Citizens

In 2021 the LEF fund joint forces with the Erasmus Initiative Vital Cities and Citizens (VCC). A research programme shared by three EUR social science and humanity faculties (ISS, Erasmus School of Social and Behavioural Sciences and Erasmus School of History, Culture and Communication) under the theme Resilient Cities and People.

It calls for interdisciplinary and inter-faculty research focusing on the social impact of COVID-19 in the cities of Rotterdam and The Hague, focusing on the theoretical concept of social, economic and organizational resilience

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