Stay Ahead: Insights from APCO

How COVID-19 and Recent Events Have Energized Online Advocacy

Dan Smith, associate director in APCO’s Washington, D.C., office, discusses how public relations leaders should take advantage of this moment and use digital tools to tap into a powerful zeitgeist around social responsibility and collective action:
Person hold a digital world
"Social media platforms are going above and beyond to create unprecedented repositories of information which are expressly designed to accelerate knowledge sharing and improve public health outcomes. But it’s not just for the people—it’s by the people. 

Strangers are reaching out with advice for those struggling with the pandemic as if they were friendly neighbors. As communicators and counselors, we have a unmatched opportunity to tap into these unified collectives, identify the common threads that bind them, and be the architects of meaningful changes in public opinion and policy.

For a Resilient Recovery, We Must Avoid Silos in our Global Scientific Communities

James Yi, managing director of the APCO Worldwide’s Southeast Asia and Korea operations, discusses how the recent of dividing biotech activities by country in a so-called “race for a cure” narrative is not a sustainable model for continued progress:
Scientist pipetting a solution
"Greater scientific collaboration is critical in reviving economic growth and scalable recovery as we battle this COVID-19 pandemic. Before COVID-19, the global biotech industry was estimated to expand at 9.9% CAGR to reach $775 billion by 2024. Asia Pacific holds the second largest share of biotech firms globally (24%), second only to the U.S. which makes up 48.2%.

More importantly, this pandemic has shown us that in addition to our ongoing work, there are many unmet patient health needs, which must be addressed urgently.
Realistically, we will only be able to achieve such goals in a reasonable timeframe by improving the way that we pool together our resources.

Some Positive News

  • Reconnecting with the community: Virtual services and online Shabbat dinners allowed members of the Jewish community to reconnect with their faith, CNN
  • Starry night: "Dark Sky" parks around the United States offer superior stargazing experiences, including virtual programs, The Wall Street Journal
  • Reusing masks: A professor at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign found a way to decontaminate N95 masks with electric cookers, The Washington Post

More Tips from Around the Water Cooler


"The pandemic will not be over until we reach herd immunity, either through a vaccine or through natural infections. Herd immunity is not a strategy but a proven scientific phenomenon, and to deny that is as silly as denying gravity."

        - Martin Kulldorff, professor at Harvard Medical School

"If we can’t get the virus under control now we’ll have to notch up social distancing to higher levels, and that would have a big impact on our economy and people’s livelihoods."

        - Chung Sye-kyun, Prime Minister of South Korea
The APCO team is working with clients globally to manage this crisis, and we stand ready to support your needs. For more resources from APCO, including our latest research, information on how we can help or to contact us, visit