Students and working people across the world are facing a continued reality of online classes and meetings, remote work, and physical distancing. Following a summer of isolation and reduced employment and volunteer opportunities, many undergraduate students, including those at Columbia, are preparing for a virtual fall semester. On the other side of the spectrum, older adults are also experiencing isolation from friends and family, as the risk of contracting a deadly case of the virus has cancelled travel and leisure activities and visits from the grandkids. These major changes to our daily social lives, and in societies as a whole, beg the question of how COVID-19 has impacted feelings of loneliness.
Associate Professor of Sociomedical Sciences Kavita Sivaramakrishnan (co-leader of our Global Histories of Science Research Cluster) is an expert on global health and aging and sat down with our work-study student Ariana Novo to talk about her newest efforts to understand and address social isolation for older people, immigrants, those in poverty and other marginalized communities. Read the full article and learn how you can contribute to research on loneliness on our website.