CoronaNet Research Project

In March 2020, Cindy Cheng and Luca Messerschmidt from the HfP Chair for International Relations (Prof. Dr. Tim Büthe) launched the CoronaNet Research Project ( with colleagues from NYU Abu Dhabi and Yale University.  With the help of more than 360 research assistants from all over the world, the CoronaNet team is compiling a dataset of policies and other actions that governments at the national and subnational levels have implemented to address the COVID-19/SARS-CoV-2 pandemic. So far, the project has identified and coded more than 15,000 different unique policies, creating – almost in real time – the biggest and most comprehensive source of information about government actions taken in response to the COVID-19 crisis, allowing researchers and decision-makers to assess the effectiveness of different policy measures.  Scholars, as well as government agencies, private sector and civil society stakeholders in several countries are already using the data; a collaboration with the World Health Organization (WHO) is in preparation.

The research team's first paper (Cheng et al, "COVID-19 Government Response Event Dataset (CoronaNet v.1.0)"), which describes the dataset and develops a policy activity index has just been published in the journal Nature: Human Behavior (

Tim Büthe, Luca Messerschmidt and Cindy Cheng have analyzed policy responses to the Coronavirus in Germany between January and May 2020 using the CoronaNet data (  Other publications can be found on the project website: