Grounded in the vast changes to work life (jobs) and home life that people are facing due to the COVID-19 pandemic (hereinafter COVID), this article presents five research directions related to COVID’s impacts on jobs—i.e., job loss, job changes, job outcomes, coping, and support—and five research directions related to COVID’s impact on home life—i.e., home life changes, children, life-related outcomes, social life, and support. In addition to this, I discuss overarching possible research directions and considerations for researchers, editors, and reviewers, as we continue our scientific journey to support people through this pandemic and beyond. I organize these directions and considerations into two sets of five each: focal groups that should be studied—i.e., underprivileged populations, different countries and cultural contexts, women (vs. men), workers in healthcare (frontline workers), elderly and at-risk—and five general issues and special considerations—i.e., role of technology as the oxygen, pre- vs. mid- vs. post-COVID studies, constraints on data collection/research due to COVID, evolution of COVID, and focus on contextualization (generalizability is irrelevant).
The onset of COVID-19, hereinafter COVID, is an unprecedented time in history. It is not only a unique situation in our lifetime, but also perhaps a unique situation across generations, with a previously similar pandemic being about a 100 years ago. At the time of writing of this article in the last week of June 2020, over ten million people have been afflicted by the diseases and over half a million people have died worldwide thus far. Indeed, there have been numerous terrible events that have taken place since the last pandemic but nothing that has had the global impact quite like COVID has.
The COVID pandemic has created unprecedented changes to all aspects of life but this has also presented unique research opportunities. In fact, they are not just opportunities but an imperative for science to get ahead of the pandemic and provide leadership in solving what is clearly the grandest of grand challenges the entire planet and its people have faced in a very long time. This article specifically presented opportunities and focal issues for future research on five job-related issues—i.e., job loss, job changes, job outcomes, coping, and support—and five life/home-related issues—i.e., home life changes, children, life-related outcomes, social life, and support.