Vít Rakušan is a Czech pedagogue and politician who serves as the leader of the Mayors and Independents (STAN) political party since 2019 and was the 1st vice-chairman in 2016 to 2019. He is a member of the Chamber of Deputies since October 2017; an elected representative of the Central Bohemia Region since 2012 and was the mayor of the City of Kolín from 2010 to 2019.
What has the pandemic shown us in terms of the capacities of cities in handling fast-changing and evolving crises? How did cities perform and how have their performances impacted the level of trust of people in their respective local institutions? What communication strategies are better suited for local governments and how do these foster trust in local institutions over national governments?
During the COVID-19 pandemic, local governments, municipalities, and cities were faced overnight with new challenges that had not occurred for several generations. While central governments had so far assumed the lion’s share of management responsibilities and governance, the pandemic highlighted central government shortfalls in dealing with local clusters of infections and a fast-evolving health crisis. In some places, this triggered a shift in population trust from central state authorities to local governments.