Learning from the COVID-19 experience: The business and economics of pandemics

29 June 2020

A must-see panel discussion on the economic impacts of COVID-19 presented by the Centre for the Business and Economics of Health (CBEH) and facilitated by Professor Peter Greste.

Our lives over the past few months have been dominated by rapid responses to the COVID-19 pandemic to minimise the health risks to ourselves and our families as well as the impacts on our economic wellbeing.

Although we may have ‘flattened the curve’ on the spread of the virus, the consequences for our lives and livelihoods are expected to continue over a long period of time.

What can we learn from the experience of the pandemic and how might we face future pandemics differently? In this facilitated discussion, researchers from The University of Queensland’s Centre for the Business and Economics of Health address these questions from three perspectives.

Discussion topics

1. Insurance, risk and uncertainty

Mechanisms to support rapid surges in demand

  • Understanding risk and uncertainty in the context of COVID-19
  • Is there a market for insurance against the effects of future pandemics?
  • Are gaps in insurance evidence of market (or government) failure?

2. Ageing populations, longevity and COVID-19

Managing the complexity of comorbidities in older populations

  • COVID-19: Shining a light on ageing populations and the care systems in Australia and beyond
  • Identifying high-risk populations – is there a rationale for isolating those over 65?

3. Planning for pandemics

Integrating health with economics

  • Promoting seamless transitions through care pathways for rapidly developing conditions
  • Planning for needs, not numbers: Integrating and aligning economic plans and policies with health plans and policies


Peter GresteProfessor Peter Greste, UNESCO Chair in Journalism and Communication




Luke ConnellyProfessor Luke Connelly

Professor of Health Economics at the Centre for the Business and Economics of Health, The University of Queensland, part-time professor at The University of Bologna and Honorary Professor at The University of Sydney.


profile photo of Brenda GannonProfessor Brenda Gannon

Professor in the School of Economics, Affiliate Professor in the Centre for the Business and Economics of Health, The University of Queensland and affiliate member of CEPAR (ARC Centre for Research Excellence in Population Ageing Research).


Stephen BirchProfessor Stephen Birch

Director and Taylor Family Chair in the Centre for the Business and Economics of Health, The University of Queensland and part-time Chair of Health Economics at the University of Manchester, UK. Read a Q&A with Professor Birch on how to plan for future pandemics