Fighting COVID-19 in Hong Kong : The effects of community and social mobilization

Kin-Man WAN*, Lawrence Ka-ki HO, Natalie W.M. WONG, Andy CHIU

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Journal PublicationsComment / Debate Research

55 Citations (Scopus)


The globalized world economy has been affected by the COVID-19 pandemic since early February 2020. In the midst of this global public health crisis, a prompt review of the counterinsurgencies that have occurred in different jurisdictions is helpful. This article examines the experience of Hong Kong (HKSAR), which successfully limited its number of confirmed cases to approximately 1100 until early June 2020. Considering the limited actions that the government has taken against the pandemic, we emphasize the prominent role of Hong Kong's civil society through highlighting the strong and spontaneous mobilization of its local communities originating from their experiences during the SARS outbreak in 2003 and the social unrest in 2019, as well as their doubts regarding the pandemic assessments and recommendations of the HKSAR and WHO authorities. This article suggests that the influence of civil society should not be overlooked in the context of pandemic management.

Original languageEnglish
Article number105055
JournalWorld Development
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2020
Externally publishedYes

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2020 Elsevier Ltd


  • Asia
  • civil society
  • COVID-19
  • Hong Kong
  • social mobilization


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