WUHAN VIRUS: BEIJING'S RESPONSE

China's response to Wuhan virus outbreak is a stunning exercise in mass mobilisation

China's top-down, authoritarian model key to executing praise-winning outbreak response

A man wearing two protective masks and gloves walking his dog last Friday past a government propaganda poster in Beijing that reads "Everyone is a witness of the new era".
A man wearing two protective masks and gloves walking his dog last Friday past a government propaganda poster in Beijing that reads "Everyone is a witness of the new era". PHOTO: AGENCE FRANCE-PRESSE
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Most remarkable of all, China pulled off the largest quarantine exercise in history when it put Wuhan and nearby cities under lockdown, isolating over 50 million people.

That Beijing could do all this, and be praised by the World Health Organisation and others for its formidable political will, organisation and execution, comes primarily down to its top-down, authoritarian model.

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A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Sunday Times on February 02, 2020, with the headline China's response to virus outbreak is a stunning exercise in mass mobilisation. Subscribe