The Centre for Aerospace & Security Studies (CASS), Islamabad, hosted a Virtual Book Launch of the book ‘Public Value and the Post-Pandemic Society’ authored by CASS Advisor on Economic Affairs & National Development Dr Usman W. Chohan and published with Routledge. The launch marked Dr Chohan’s sixth book in the past five years and is a sequel to his earlier work titled ‘Pandemic and Public Value Management.’Introducing the book and its author, Ms Zahra Niazi, Research Assistant at CASS, shared how the book draws from Public Value Theory and sheds light on the potential of multistakeholder value co-creation, highlighting the contributions of civil society, public managers, politicians, and the broader community in the post-Pandemic era.
The author, Dr Usman W. Chohan’s presentation of his book underlined that societies were undergoing transitions that reflected the aftermath of the COVID-19 Pandemic, and the post-Pandemic hardships, in manycases, were worse than the pandemic itself. Using Pakistan as a case study, Dr Chohan noted that the nation effectively managed the Pandemic through a collaborative effort involving various stakeholders, including the government and broader society. This cooperation positioned Pakistan favourably in its swift return to normalcy. However, the subsequent postPandemic period presented significant challenges for the country. Moreover, he suggested that domestic and international asymmetries and inequalities were considerably worsening post-Pandemic public disvalue and destruction.
As a way forward, he stressed that in the pursuit of more cohesive public value, it was crucial to underscore the importance of collaboration of leadership at various levels –international, national, and regional. Such leadership should prioritise delivering synergies across different scales of operation. Parallel to this, there was an urgent need to enhance the versatility and capacity of public health institutions, enabling them to reach across diverse sectors. In his view, this could be achieved by fostering a holistic engagement approach that incorporates all agents, from the private sector to civil society.‘By doing so, decision-making becomes more evidence-based, drawing from a wealth of diverse inputs. Furthermore, it becomes essential to work proactively with marginalised communities. In all these endeavours, the values of timeliness and transparency should be upheld as guiding principles,’ he concluded.
The book launch was attended by researchers and online participants from academia who highlighted the book’s noteworthy and vital contribution to the literature.