Finnish response to first wave of Covid-19 accentuated persuasion

Pia Polsa, Petteri Repo*, University He

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapterScientificpeer-review


While the first confirmed case of Covid-19 appeared already at the end of January 2020, the first wave of the pandemic remained more subdued in Finland than in other European countries. In this chapter, we look at how Finnish society responded to and took action during the first wave of the pandemic, which lasted until June 2020. In particular, we review key societal and political responses within a systemic framework focused on community wellbeing and individual quality of life, as proposed by Shultz, Rahtz, and Sirgy (2017). The Finnish response was led by the government, and it prompted dramatic restrictions on the freedom of personal movement and new labor market arrangements. Additionally, significant financial support was given to businesses. Schools went online, as did many workplaces. While people at times expressed uncertainties about the effects of these responses, they resulted in fewer deaths and less of a drop in economic activity than in other European countries. Persuasion rather than command was characteristic of the Finnish response, and the wellbeing framework highlights that the way in which goods and services as well as recreational and cultural opportunities are provided to citizens and consumers require attention during pandemics.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication• Community, the Economy, and the COVID-19 Pandemic: Lessons Learned in Community and Market Development
Publication statusAccepted/In press - 01.01.2022
MoE publication typeA3 Book chapter


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