Category: Law and Ethics

Remembering 22 July: Litigating Memorials

As of July 2021 the memorials commemorating the 22 July attack include the Government Quarter, with the temporary memorial plaque and the 22 July Centre; Hegnhuset on Utøya; the 1000 iron roses next to Oslo Cathedral; 52 identical commemorative stone sculptures in affected municipalities across Norway; and as well as multiple other memorials situated in… Read more »

Artificial Intelligence, Warfare, and Bias

When you think about Artificial Intelligence (AI) and war, you might find yourself thinking about killer robots, like those we have seen in movies such as The Terminator. In reality, AI and warfare looks quite different from these popularized images, and today we see many countries around the world exploring the use of AI and… Read more »

Terror Did Not Strike Indiscriminately

22nd JULY 2011: a terrorist killed 68 young people and bombed the Government Quarter, where he killed nine people and injured many more, because the ‘Labour-Party state’ was promoting ethnic, religious and political diversity. “Then they came for me — and there was no one left to speak out for me.” Thus, the Lutheran pastor… Read more »

On Words and World-Making:  Law professors, power and responsibility

On 6 May 2021, something extraordinary happened in Norwegian academia: in an op-ed in the newspaper Stavanger Aftenblad, Ole Gjems-Onstad, a law professor at BI Norwegian Business School (BI), criticized the Labour Party and 22 July survivors for a lack of self-criticism. The op-ed was met with disbelief, horror and condemnation by survivors, newspaper editors,… Read more »

Norwegian Quarantine Hotels: Infection Control or Penal Measure?

Quarantine hotels and Easter trips According to the Norwegian government, quarantine hotels are an infection-control measure. In this blog post we contest this view, and argue that the rules are penal in character. “We” are all Norwegian: four medical doctors, one psychologist, and three jurists. The rules distinguish between “necessary” and “unnecessary” travel, but the… Read more »

Why digital vaccine passports are a bad idea: the Norwegian perspective

Expanding the use of Covid-19 digital vaccine passports to domestic purposes would in practice represent a return to the checkpoint permit (in Norwegian ‘passerseddel’, in German “Passierschein”), a form of internal passport. This type of document is associated with authoritarian regimes and with war and conflict, last used in Norway during the Second World War.

Tech-Based States of Emergency: some key takeaways

The COVID-19 pandemic has triggered the acceleration of pre-existing technological trends. As states introduce new rules and technological solutions to fight the pandemic, it can be tempting to view these technological applications as neutral scientific decisions. However, we must critically examine these decisions because times of crisis set standards which can last long after the… Read more »

Public-Private Partnerships during COVID-19: time to ask some questions

To say that the world was not prepared for a pandemic is an understatement. The point was made early on that in order to overcome COVID-19 and make it to the other side, it was “all hands-on deck”. This included individuals, health experts, governments, the private sector and – the focus of this piece –… Read more »