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Opportunity for Master’s students to conduct thesis research about mental well-being in Denmark during the COVID-19 pandemic

In the interdisciplinary research project ‘Standing together – at a distance: how Danes are living with the corona crisis’, we are investigating how the COVID-19 pandemic in Denmark is affecting people’s mental well-being; e.g., feelings of anxiety and loneliness, as well as quality of life and social interactions.

Since the pandemic was declared in March 2020, our research group based at the Section for Epidemiology has collected quantitative survey data on mental-health outcomes in >40,000 adults; specifically, time-series data on perceived loneliness, anxiety, worries, quality of life, specific precautionary behaviours, and attitudes towards the government’s preventative measures. To contextualise these results, team members also conducted qualitative telephone interviews with people across Denmark about their experiences during the first three months of the lockdown

overview of data

Timeline showing seminal events during the lockdown in Denmark in relation to how and when the project collected data between 27 February and 17 May 2020. The hospitalisation curve represents the total number of patients hospitalised at any given time, while the death curve represents the cumulative number of deaths due to COVID-19.

These data sources would provide Master’s students with an exceptional opportunity to conduct novel quantitative or mixed-methods analyses, which could directly contribute to better understanding the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on mental-health outcomes. Possible projects might include, e.g.:

- conducting in-depth assessments of loneliness in population subgroups determined by gender, age, education, and previous disease status;

- analysing trajectories of specific worries and precautionary behaviours in the Danish population and in certain population subgroups during the pandemic;

- using a mixed-methods approach that integrates the qualitative interview material to investigate and provide insight into unexpected outcomes of the quantitative results.

We would be very interested in discussing these suggestions for potential projects – or any other ideas you might have! For more information, please contact Project Coordinator Amy Clotworthy ( – English/Danish) and/ or Senior Analyst Tibor V. Varga ( – only English).