In my personal opinion, while action of members of city and provincial government were hindered by the overly structured culture of confucian concept of top down (and not upsetting people in hierarchal leadership above), yielded terrible mistakes in the early days from both delays in shutdown to unfortunate ‘whistleblower’ erroneous chastisement. Plus, the entire unfolding of the situation during the Chinese Spring Festival time was a double edged sword — significantly less people in built up cities to become infected and isolate, but how to get those same people back to their cities during the epidemic. Further I think it was a mistake to not close the mainland borders shortly after Spring Festival ended.
But, all in all, for a country so geographically vast, with such a massive population (1.4 billion), and diverse in its education levels, for central government to achieve what they achieved in a calm manner in such a fast response time was remarkable… particularly getting 99% voluntary support and compliance to isolation and lockdown measures in modern cities such as Shanghai, where typically, these 27 million residents question central government actions, was astonishing.
Remember, this is all coming from a liberal / centrist guy with a disdain for a lot of things here, but credit is due where credit is due to the reality of facts.
Please note that I may expand upon this timeline based on friends requests from time to time.
I hope the above is useful to you.