CivicPulse Special Issue Report Series:

Local Governance and COVID-19

“We need better information on how to prepare and respond.”

—  Township manager, Rhode Island

Local governments are on the frontlines of COVID-19: they are managing implementation of state and federal policies, distributing critical information to their residents, and responding to the unique concerns of their local community members. Yet, the local governance perspective tends to be overlooked in the national policy discourse. Drawing on our recurring surveys of local governments across all fifty states, this special-issue CivicPulse report series is dedicated to generating insights about challenges facing local governments during this unprecedented time. In doing so, we hope to both support local governments in their work as well as elevate their voices in the rapidly unfolding national conversation. 

Featured Finding

As public health restrictions evolve in response to COVID-19, they will only be effective if local communities comply with them.  Most local governments have seen high compliance with restrictions on dining-in services and large gatherings, but less so on restrictions on in-person work and social distancing. In general, local officials in the Midwest reported the highest levels of compliance, while local officials in the South reported the lowest levels. 

Read more about these findings in our second special issue report


COVID-19 series second report released on the challenge of enforcement and community compliance 

View our NEW question library to explore all of our COVID-19 survey questions  

Governing magazine cites CivicPulse report in article about state preemption 

COVID-19 series first report released on coordination challenges between local governments and higher authorities 

Report Series​

Report 2:

By Jonathan Chu, Emily Katz and Nathan Lee

In this special issue report, CivicPulse asked local officials about how compliance with measures combatting COVID-19 might change over time, and how their governments have been promoting these measures.

Report 1:

By Jonathan Chu, Emily Katz and Nathan Lee

In this special issue report, CivicPulse asked local officials about their response to the COVID-19 epidemic, how they are learning about the crisis, and what they wish the state and federal governments knew. 

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