Learning more about R (a.k.a. Reproduction number) and COVID-19

R is a number used as a simplified indication of how quickly COVID-19 (or any other infectious disease) is spreading and how critical it is to take additional measures to control the spread of the disease.

R values per country as of the 17th of December 2020 (source: http://metrics.covid19-analysis.org/)

But what exactly does R represent, what are the values of R around the world and are there any resources we can use to see how it evolves over time? I am going to share what I learned but fair warning: I am not a doctor or an epidemiologist so please also do your own research using sources you trust.

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