The Sum of all Fears
Tanya Seajay, Founder & CEO
There is a deep attraction and unrelenting need to see the future before it happens; to bring a degree of certainty to things when they are uncertain.
Having our technology, an endless amount of data and AI at our fingertips means that the Orenda team can sort through the daily noise to find patterns in behaviour in real-time. And we hope that it will help us to visualize what’s coming next.
Right now, our team, like many of you, is focused on when the COVID-19 crisis will end and when countries will begin to recover. On Friday, we began collecting data, and are already seeing patterns start to take shape. Admittedly, it’s still early days. The question we are asking our data is if a country gains greater favor with its citizens, does that favor translate into a faster and stronger recovery for its communities?
Although this is somewhat speculation at this point, we do believe that when leaders are trusted, act with greater social responsibility, and govern with greater satisfaction, they will move mountains. The fact is, when we trust someone, we permit them to move with greater speed and more agility. When we are dealing with a virus with unrelenting geographical spread, those characteristics arguably save lives. Along with trust, a recent article in the Economist reported that two other significant factors are a leader’s attitude during uncertainty and the structure and competence of a country’s health system.
To begin our small, and important research project, we focused on gathering data from seven countries, English speaking only and from devices that permit location tags (about 20 percent of the population allow this feature, many citizens can’t safely share their location at the best of times).
To provide a quick understanding of what Orenda measures, its technology scores online content from the public that triggers the following metrics:
Our technology can get very specific about an individual country, leader, corporation, product or brand. But for this exercise, we used COVID-19 as the object of our attention, scored content based on each of the factors (overall), and then organized the data onto a World map.
Two metrics initially proving to be favorably correlated in the COVID 19 crisis, are trust and social responsibility. The countries showing more favourability in these areas are Canada, the UK and Germany. (A caveat: Germany has the least amount of data out of the seven countries Orenda analyzed).
Based on numerical scores, Canada gained favor for its quick response in a number of areas, including ramping up testing, convincing its citizens to stay home, highly coordinated efforts across provinces, the Prime Minister deferring to health experts, and more.
The UK is also starting to benefit from strict emergency measures taken by its citizens and government, and a partial economic shutdown. One expert is reporting early signs that the outbreak is slowing down.
Germany has taken serious measures as well, having its population under strict lockdown, with quarantines imposed on its citizens and extensive testing. Its leadership is viewed as calm and unified. The country also has one of the lowest COVID-19 death rates in the world.
The United States, in comparison, continues to experience losses in both trust and social responsibility. US officials are under fire for not making testing widely available, for a lack of leadership at multiple levels, and for warnings from health experts that have been largely ignored. Unfortunately for its many beautiful communities and people, the country is quickly becoming the new epicentre of the COVID-19 pandemic and death rates are rising.
We will continue to update our results over the coming weeks and months and will share our findings with you here. We also hope to expand our research to include more countries, additional languages and bring in additional datapoints for greater learning.