The COVID-19 Crisis and the Information Polity

A Global Comparison of Technological Responses

The COVID-19-crisis and the information polity: An overview of responses and discussions in twenty-one countries from six continents

Information Polity, Vol.25, No.3, 2020.

Albert Meijer, Utrecht University
C. William R. Webster, University of Stirling.

Governments around the world are utilizing data and information systems to manage the COVID-19-crisis. To obtain an overview of all these efforts, this global report presents the expert reports of 21 countries regarding the relation between the COVID-19-crisis and the information polity. A comparative analysis of these reports highlights that governments focus on strengthening six functions: management of information for crisis management, publishing public information for citizens, providing digital services to citizens, monitoring citizens in public space, facilitating information exchange between citizens and developing innovative responses to COVID-19. The comparative overview of information responses to the COVID-19-crisis shows that these responses cannot only be studied from a rational perspective on government information strategies but need to be studied as political and symbolic interventions.

Contributing Authors
Frank Bannister, Colin J. Bennett, Kaiping Chen, Heungsuk Choi, J. Ignacio Criado, Maria Alexandra Cunha, Mehmet Akif Demircioglu, Mila Gasco-Hernandez, Paul Henman, Douglas Kimemia, Veiko Lember, Karl Löfgren, Luis F. Luna-Reyes, Albert Meijer, Ines Mergel, David Murakami Wood, Giorgia Nesti, Erico Przeybilovicz, Aarthi Raghavan, Ola Svenonius, Rosamunde van Brakel, William Webster, Mete Yildiz.

Full article available in Information Polity.

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