A COVID-19 Rapid Response research project funded by the Arts and Humanities Research Council on behalf of UK Research and Innovation (grant AH/V015214/1)
This project, at the intersection of law, ethics, citizen deliberation, public health and data science, aims to develop a values-based framework to help understand and address the challenges posed by data-driven responses to public health emergencies and the need to build public trust.
In their COVID-19 responses, states have relied on data-driven approaches to justify far-reaching measures including closing entire business sectors and categories of travel, curtailing personal liberties and requiring compliance with new technologies for contact tracing and social distancing.
To be effective, such measures must be internationally co-ordinated, nationally adopted and adhered to by a high proportion of the public. Trust underpins both national adoption and public adherence: trust in international institutions, in the measures, and their scientific foundations.
This project examines two critical enablers of that trust: good governance and the rule of law. It aims to provide practical guidance on how international and national institutions can build public trust in the processes by which they design and implement data-driven responses to public health emergencies. The research consists of four interconnected work packages which examine
- International governance frameworks for public health emergencies
- Values-based principles to guide data-driven responses by national institutions including governments, parliaments, courts and police
- Reforms that may be needed to data governance (national and international) given the scale of personal data sharing that is required
- A citizen jury deliberation on the trustworthiness of data-driven measures and what additional safeguards may be needed.
- Bingham Centre and BIICL: Jan van Zyl Smit (Principal Investigator), Julinda Beqiraj, Jean-Pierre Gauci, Richard Mackenzie-Gray Scott, Irene Pietropaoli, Nyasha Weinberg and Constantinos Yallourides.
- University of Edinburgh, Global Academy of Health: Claudia Pagliari
- University of Newcastle: Lilian Edwards
- Alan Turing Institute: Anjali Mazumder
- Ada Lovelace Institute: Reema Patel
- Richard Mackenzie-Gray Scott and Jean-Pierre Gauci, International Law Applicable to Public Health Emergencies
- Jean-Pierre Gauci, Rule of Law and Good Governance Principles for National Responses to Public Health Emergencies
- Katie Lines and Richard Mackenzie-Gray Scott, Written Evidence submitted to the Public Administration and Constitutional Affairs Committee Covid-19 Vaccine Certification Inquiry
- Richard Mackenzie-Gray Scott, 'A Short-Term Option for Addressing Misinformation during Public Health Emergencies: Online Nudging and the Human Right to Freedom of Thought'
- Lilian Edwards, 'Part 1: The Great Vaccination Passports Debate: "ID Cards on Steroids" or the Rational Way Forward?'
- Irene Pietropaoli, 'Part 2: Getting Digital Health Passports Right? Legal, Ethical and Equality Considerations'
- Richard Mackenzie-Gray Scott and Jean-Pierre Gauci, 'Calls for a New Treaty on Pandemics and the Law that Already Exists'
- Richard Mackenzie-Gray Scott, 'The Ethics of Relying on Vaccine Certifications for International Travel during times of Vaccine Inequity'
- Claudia Pagliari, 'Digital health and primary care: Past, pandemic and prospects', J Glob Health 2021;11:01005.