The Impact of Covid-19 on World Politics


This article is an attempt to analyze the changing nature of world politics after the outbreak of Coronavirus. It is known that states still struggle to manage the Coronavirus crisis and vaccine development is an important step in this regard. This pandemic has already begun to transform the dynamics of foreign policy relations among states and domestic policy preferences. Based on this argument, firstly this essay will define COVID-19 pandemic, secondly, it will address some relevant concepts. Thirdly, the impact of Coronavirus in world politics will be under analysis.

Covid-19 Pandemic

Coronavirus pandemic first broke out in China and it has been influencing the world since December 2019.  The pandemic has caused the death of more than 1.5 million people so far. Hegemonic powers such as USA and the underdeveloped states and even international organizations such as World Health Organization all have become helpless amid pandemic conditions. The scientists have finally developed a vaccine for the pandemic. It is noted that, while the vaccine may potentially prevent infection, it cannot cure the disease.

Even though governments slow the spread of Covid-19 through steps like quarantine enforcements, and mask wearing requirements, the only way to prevent people from catching Covid-19 is possible with a vaccine. The COVID-19 virus spreads very easily and the majority of the world’s population is very vulnerable to it.

USA has been one of the most effected states from the pandemic. Also, Italy and United Kingdom have been the countries which received a serious blow. The first policy of UK was to let the pandemic spread as Boris Johnson called “herd immunity” however this policy caused the death of lots of people.

Conceptual Considerations

-Foreign policy

Foreign policy is defined as “the sum of official external relations conducted by an independent actor (usually a state) in international relations”. [1] The foreign policy of a state is dynamic and world affairs like nuclear threat, climate change, or pandemic like COVID-19 have direct impact on foreign policy.

-Soft Power

Soft power exists when foreign policy preferences are based on culture, economic interdependency and diplomacy.

-Humanitarian Diplomacy

Humanitarian diplomacy means that decision-makers to respect human rights in the conduct of foreign policy. To give an example, Turkey conducted humanitarian diplomacy in Somalia at the height of the famine in 2011.

The Impact of Coronavirus on World Politics

One of the big impacts of Coronavirus pandemic is about states’ dependence of international organizations like World Health Organization. This dependence has got stronger.

Another impact of pandemic on foreign policy preferences is the need for more cooperation between states. In this process, Turkey sent medical aid to many countries. This policy showed that soft power of Turkey has got stronger during this crisis.

Another impact of Coronavirus pandemic is about its economic aspect. In the following years, states are supposed to pursue more closed economic policies. Economic cooperation may fall while the scientific cooperation will rise. Apart from that, in terms of humanitarian diplomacy, Coronavirus will make humanitarian diplomacy gain more significance in International relations.

Another impact of the pandemic on the foreign relations will be about diplomatic processes. Until COVID-19, intergovernmental affairs have generally been conducted  face-to-face. However, after pandemic the role of technology and Internet has become much stronger. Zoom conferences today dominate international diplomatic relations.

On the other hand, the travel procedures between the countries will be controlled in a more detailed way in the future. Borders will be more protected. Because international travels were among the factors that made the pandemic become widespread. In the future, travel controls may play a big role in international politics.

In this essay, the impact of Coronavirus pandemic on world politics has been discussed. As known since the end of 2019, economic relations, domestic policies and foreign relations have changed. Travel restrictions, online diplomatic summits have gained significance. As concluding remarks, it can be said that both domestic policies and foreign policies in many states have been subjected to change due to pandemic conditions.


Burak B., (2020), “Coronavirus as a litmus test for Turkey’s soft power and social welfare state policies”, available at    (Reached on 30.05.2020)

Hill, C., (2003) The Changing Politics of Foreign Policy. Houndmills: Palgrave.

               Worldometer, COVID-19 Cases, Coronavirus Update (Live): 67,402,219 Cases and 1,541,897 Deaths from COVID-19 Virus Pandemic – Worldometer ( (7.12.2020)

               Zimmer, C. et. al. (2020),  “Coronavirus Vaccine Tracker” The New York Times, Covid-19 Vaccine Tracke Latest Updates – The New York Times (


[1] Christopher Hill,(2003) The Changing Politics of Foreign Policy. Houndmills: Palgrave, p. 3

Dr.Begum Burak
Dr.Begum Burak
Dr. Begüm Burak is an independent researcher. In 2015, Ms. Burak got her PhD degree. During her occupation as a teaching assistant, she got engaged in short-term academic activities in Italy, United Kingdom, Bosnia and Spain. In 2018, she became one of the founding members of For her twitter visit: @begumburak1984


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