Tag: Pandemic

Does Infection Trump Everything?

On 7 April, prime minister Erna Solberg presented the government’s plan for reopening society. The plan provides predictability and clarity about prioritization, including the prioritization of children and young people. This is welcome, but the plan also reveals the problematic aspects of Norway’s handling of the coronavirus crisis.

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 »

National Risk Assessments: a political vaccine against the next disaster?

The COVID-19 pandemic highlights the political potential of National Risk Assessments (NRAs). The consistent focus of European NRAs on the risk of pandemics while public attention was glued to terrorism demonstrates their relevance to the question of how to prevent and prepare for future disasters – be they natural or man-made. As a basis for… Read more »

Revisiting Emergency eLearning

On April 30, 2020, my article “COVID-19 and Emergency eLearning: Consequences of the Securitization of Higher Education for Post-Pandemic Pedagogy” was published in Contemporary Security Policy. In that piece, I argued that securitization theory could help understand the experience of teaching and learning online as an emergency measure, but also that the lessons of desecuritization… Read more »

COVID-19: A call for people-centered national security strategy in Africa

Humanity has been extraordinarily challenged by the coronavirus with serious and unprecedented impacts on all aspects of human life and the ways states have been functioning and managing public affairs. COVID-19 may either consolidate global solidarity or it may take humanity on a path toward the demise of globalization and multilateralism. There is no doubt… 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 »