Melbourne Forum 2020: Webinar 3

Webinar 3: Multi-Level Government and COVID-19

The fifth Melbourne Forum on Constitution Building in Asia and the Pacific has been organised as a series of four online seminars. The third webinar was held on 17 September 2020.

Video of Webinar 3 - Melbourne Forum 2020

The theme of this session was the ways in which systems of multi-level government operated in responding to the emergency. Multi-level government for this purpose includes all states with significant devolution, whether formally federal, unitary with special autonomy for parts of the country, or regionalised with a measure of constitutional protection.

Papers were produced to frame the discussions of case studies from four countries:

Questions to be considered in relation to each case included:

  • What form does multi-level government take?
  • Did emergency conditions change the normal arrangements for multi-level government?
  • Were both/all levels of government involved in responding to the pandemic?
  • Did governments work together, separately, or both?
  • How effective was action by the centre? How effective was action by sub-state levels of government?
  • On balance, was multi-level government a positive, negative, or neutral factor in responding to this emergency?
  • What positive or negative insights can be gained from experience with multi-level government during this emergency in this case?