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  1. Long reads
25 March 2020updated 31 Jul 2023 11:35am

The state transformed

New Statesman contributors from around the world reflect on how the coronavirus pandemic is transforming the ways in which we are governed.

By New Statesman

Singapore has become a model for battling coronavirus, by Laura Spinney

Thanks to fast action from the government, much of everyday life continues in Singapore. Schools, universities, shops and restaurants remain open and most public institutions are still functioning.

Coronavirus is testing Georgian libertarianism to the limit, by Ivo Vock

Overnight, the Caucasus country has been transformed from one of Europe’s most open states to among its most reclusive.

The virus will change the British state in ten crucial ways, by Jonathan Powell

Certain aspects of the way our government works will change fundamentally, and not all for the better.

 The crisis has turbocharged China’s intrusive state capitalism, by Jacob Dreyer

China’s outbreak has been brought under control thanks to an Orwellian system of high-tech monitoring, from personal QR codes to a flourishing of new apps that facilitate lives lived in locked apartments.

The crisis has buttressed Italy’s democratic state – for now, by David Adler

Virtually overnight, Italians have shifted from dismissive cynicism of their national government to a blind and trusting devotion – even as the nation shut down and residents were shut in.

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 For all the talk of solidarity, the US government is falling short, by Emily Tamkin

The wealthy and powerful without symptoms are able to get tested; others, even medical professionals, are told there are not enough tests for them.

As Putin grabs more power, the pressures on the state are mounting, by Felix Light

Many believe Russia’s number of confirmed infections (at the time of writing, 306, with no deaths) is inaccurate – the chronically underfunded state healthcare system is ill-equipped to administer the number of tests needed.

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This article appears in the 25 Mar 2020 issue of the New Statesman, The crisis chancellor

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