Coordinated Mobilization Matters: How Did Taiwan Do It During the Covid-19 Pandemic?

Chun-yuan Wang, Elaine Yi Lu, Yan-Yi Chang, Alex L. Huang


The Covid-19 pandemic hit the world hard. Ensnared by a large-scale emergency unprecedented in recent history, mobilization, the classic issue of emergency management, is under stress and test. Yet Taiwan stands out in its rather limited cases of infections despite its frequent contact with mainland China and high population density. Could its mobilization have made the difference? This article traces the steps and strategies that Taiwan took to implement a coordinated mobilization. Three strategies were highlighted: awareness mobilization by declaring emergency early on, resource mobilization by preemptively controlling, boldly incentivizing and surgically distributing resources, and agility mobilization via big data and technology to optimize the response system.

Full Text:



Ansell, C., Boin, A., & Keller, A. (2010). Managing transboundary crises: Identifying the building blocks of an effective response system. Journal of Contingencies and Crisis Management, 18(4), 195-207.

Blokhin, A. (2020). 5 states with the highest real GDP per capita. Investopedia. Accessed 24 February 2021.

“Central News Agency” (CNA). (2020). Chen, Mei-Ling: Open data to check mask map easily. Accessed 4 February 2020. (in Chinese)

“Central News Agency” (CNA). (2020). The mask real-name system 3.0 will be launched on the road, and the pre-order in superstore recognizes card but not people. Accessed 21 April 2020. (in Chinese)

“Central News Agency” (CAN). (2020). Goodwill (Dunmu) fleet infected by the Ministry of National Defense: There are 4 major deficiencies such as notifications not implemented. Accessed 21 April 2020. (in Chinese)

“Central News Agency” (CNA). (2020). Taiwan has seen high number of strong earthquakes this year: CWB. Accessed 3 April 2019.

Col, J. M. (2007). Managing disasters: The role of local government. Public Administrative Review, 67(S1), 114-124.

Comfort, L. K. (2007). Crisis management in hindsight: Cognition, communication, coordination, and control. Public Administration Review, 67(S1), 189-197.

Dyregrov, A., Solomon, R., & Bassoe, C. F. (2000). Mental mobilization processes in critical incident stress situations. International Journal of Emergency Mental Health, 2(2), 73-82.

Elsubbaugh, S., Fildes, R., & Rose, M. B. (2004). Preparation for crisis management: A proposed model and empirical evidence. Journal of Contingencies and Crisis Management, 12(3), 112-127.

Executive Yuan. (2020). Premier urges renewed vigilance for 3rd wave of COVID-19 fight. Accessed 9 April 2020. (in Chinese)

Executive Yuan. (2020). Central epidemic command center raised to level-1 facility. Accessed 9 April 2020. (in Chinese)

Feng, S., Shen, C., Xia, N., Song, W., Fan, M., & Cowling, B. J. (2020). Rational use of face masks in the COVID-19 pandemic. The Lancet Respiratory Medicine, 8, 434-436.

Gil-Garcia, J. R., Guler, A., Pardo, T. A., & Burke, G. B. (2019). Characterizing the importance of clarity of roles and responsibilities in government inter-organizational collaboration and information sharing initiatives. Government Information Quarterly, 36(4), 1-7.

Johns Hopkins Coronavirus Resource Center. (2020). COVID-19 dashboard by the center for systems science and engineering (CSSE) at johns hopkins university (JHU). Accessed 26 April 2020.

Lindell, M. K., Prater, C. S., and Perry, R. W. (2007). Introduction to emergency management. NJ: John Wiley & Sons, Inc.

Koller, G. R. (2007). Modern Corporate Risk Management. Ft. Lauderdale, FL: J. Ross.

“Ministry of Health and Welfare” (MOHW). (2020). The “real-name mask system” is on the road today, and professional medical personnel serve the people. Accessed 18 April 2020. (in Chinese)

“Ministry of Health and Welfare” (MOHW). (2020). “Mask real name system 2.0” online shopping will start trial operation tomorrow, and it is very convenient for supermarkets to pick up goods. Accessed 18 April 2020. (in Chinese)

“Ministry of Health and Welfare”. (2020). Latest epidemic information. Accessed 30 April 2020. (in Chinese)

National Health Insurance Administration. (2020). The comparison of mask real-name systems. Accessed 22 April 2020. (in Chinese)

New York State. (2020). Amid ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, Governor Cuomo issues executive order requiring all people in New York to wear masks or face coverings in public. Accessed 24 February 2021.

New York State. (2020). No. 202: declaring a disaster emergency in the state of New York. Accessed 26 April 2020.

New York State. (2016). Table 2: Population, land area, and population density by county, New York State - 2015. Accessed 24 February 2021.

New York Times. (2020). New York coronavirus map and case count. Accessed 26 April 2020.

New York Times. (2020). Coronavirus in N.Y.: Cuomo declares state of emergency. Accessed 7 March 2020.

Nohrstedt, D. (2016). Explaining mobilization and performance of collaborations in routine emergency management. Administration & Society, 48(2), 135-162.

Smart, C., & Vertinsky, I. (1977). Designs for crisis decision units. Administrative Science Quarterly, 22(4), 640-657.

Tanifuji, E. (2000). Crisis awareness and organizational response capabilities in present Japanese local governments: Crisis awareness survey findings. Journal of Contingencies and Crisis Management, 8(1), 30-41.

Wang, Y. L. (2020). 20 countries ask Taiwan for Help! the national team of the mask built 92 production lines in 40 days, and the experience of building factories was exported to Europe and America. Accessed 18 April 2020. (in Chinese)

Yang, Y. N. (2009). Research on disaster rescue system: The 88 flood case in Taiwan. Journal of Public Administration, 32, 143-169. (in Chinese)

Yang, Y. N. (2010). Disaster rescuing system of local government: The 921 earthquake in Taiwan. Disasters, 34(1), 112-136.

Zhang, D., Mansfield, E., & Voyles Pulver, D. (2020). The US needs masks to fight coronavirus, but supplies from China fell as demand rose. USA Today. Accessed 26 April 2020.



  • There are currently no refbacks.

Chinese Public Administration Review (ISSN 1539-6754, Online ISSN 2573-1483)  is published by the School of Government, Sun Yat-sen University.