A Complexity Lens on the COVID-19 Pandemic

Document Type : Viewpoint


1 Geneva Transformative Governance Lab, Global Studies Institute, University of Geneva, Geneva, Switzerland

2 School of Public Health, Li Ka Shing Faculty of Medicine, University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong, China

3 Swiss Tropical and Public Health Institute, University of Basel, Basel, Switzerland

4 Geneva Centre of Humanitarian Studies, Faculty of Medicine, University of Geneva and Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies, Geneva, Switzerland

5 Faculty of Health Sciences, Simon Fraser University, Burnaby, BC, Canada

6 Infection Control Programme, University of Geneva Hospitals and Faculty of Medicine, Geneva, Switzerland

7 Bren School of Environmental Science and Management, University of California at Santa Barbara, Santa Barbara, CA, USA



The most striking feature of the coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) pandemic and associated responses is its social and ecological complexity. Applying a complexity lens can improve our understanding of the current COVID-19 pandemic but how can this best be done? Complexity science is not a unified theory but rather a collection of concepts, theories, and methods that are increasingly influencing a range of scholarly disciplines. Complex systems can be simply defined as “co-evolving multilayer networks.”1... (Read more...)


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Volume 11, Issue 11
November 2022
Pages 2769-2772
  • Receive Date: 21 August 2020
  • Revise Date: 29 April 2021
  • Accept Date: 30 April 2021
  • First Publish Date: 01 November 2022