Category: Beyond the COVID Curve

The COVID-19 Tracking Apps Ecosystem Unraveled: Critical Issues for Global Health

In March and April 2020, an ecosystem of tracing apps suddenly emerged, presenting digital solutions as indispensable for winning the battle against Covid-19. A few months later, the techno-optimism has subsided drastically, ranging from a perception that apps are problematic surveillance tools (Russia, Bahrain and Kuwait) or ineffective (Singapore, France and Iceland) to the more… Read more »

The Pitfalls of Societal Impact in a Politicized Environment: An Example from the Corona Era

The British magazine The Spectator referred to research published in Norway to back up the magazine’s claim that societal lockdowns are not an effective means to reduce the spread of COVID-19 infections. This unlikely occurrence highlights some of the difficulties in ensuring that research has a societal impact. Funders and taxpayers reasonably expect that research… Read more »

Children in Lockdown: Children’s Rights, Covid-19 and the Case of Norway

“The lost generation of the Covid-19 pandemic is not those at risk over 65, but our children and youth, particularly at present here in Larvik municipality. We communicate with children subjected to violence by siblings, threats, mothers who cry all day, children with mentally ill parents, parents with drug and substance abuse problems, parents in… Read more »

The COVID-19 Crisis Spotlights Criticality of Women’s Participation and UNSCR 1325: A Policy-Research Exchange

Women are often on the periphery of formal peace and political solutions with limited decision-making power. We argue that the current COVID-19 crisis has spotlighted three critical elements affecting women’s participation which need to be tackled in the upcoming 20th anniversary of Resolution 1325, the first UN Security Council Resolution on Women, Peace and Security;… Read more »

The Role of State-Supported Disinformation in the Wake of COVID-19

On April 1 the European External Action Service (EEA) released a report alleging China and Russia had carried out a coordinated disinformation campaign around the origin and the spread of COVID-19 to sway public opinion abroad and create divisions among EU members. The report claims that China and Russia are spreading targeted disinformation through their… Read more »

Coronavirus and the (Wannabe) Dictators

In December of last year, the Chinese state jailed a physician in the city of Wuhan. His crime? Attempting to warn authorities against the occurrence of a potentially contagious and deadly new virus. The physician, Dr. Li Wenliang, has since died from the same disease whose spread he tried to contain.

Ramadan and Social Responsibility During Coronavirus

Muslims have just celebrated Eid al-Fitr, the festival that marks the end of Ramadan, the month of fasting. The month of fasting, which is demanding in itself, has been even harder this year with the current social distancing requirements. Usually the high point of each day would be gathering with family and friends to break… Read more »

The Nordic Countries and Sweden: the battle against COVID-19 continues

This piece is part of our blog series Beyond the COVID Curve. COVID-19 has quickly changed everything from our daily routines, to the policies of governments, to the fortunes of the global economy. How will it continue to shape society and the conditions for peace and conflict globally in the near future and long after we… Read more »

Norway’s Smittestopp (‘Infection Stop’) App as a Socio-Legal Problem

At the time of writing in early May 2020, Norwegians have in many ways escaped lightly from the first phase of the pandemic. The outbreak was contained at an early stage, the number of cases is low and there have been few deaths. In addition, Norway has money in the bank to secure basic welfare… Read more »

Can We Combat Conspiracy Theories about Pandemics?

Did you know that HIV was created by the US government in order to oppress the country’s African American population? Or that researchers engineered the Zika virus to ruin Brazil’s hosting of the 2016 Olympics? Or that coronavirus is linked to the roll-out of 5G mobile networks? This piece is part of our blog series Beyond… Read more »