As COVID-19 continues to challenge Canada and the world in unprecedented ways, the scientific community has focused efforts on a wide range of responses, from developing vaccines to deploying new digital technologies to help track and contain the pandemic. Professor Michael Geist has made repeated valuable contributions to this ongoing discourse.
In an effort to inform government actions and decision-making, the Canadian Institute for Advanced Research (CIFAR) has established an Expert Advisory Group (EAG) on Society, Technology and Ethics in a Pandemic (STEP). Professor Geist was invited to join this group to assist in providing advice on the technical, social, legal, and ethical considerations for deploying novel technologies in response to COVID-19. The group of advisors includes leading Canadian experts in law, regulatory innovation, artificial intelligence, epidemiology, clinical care, philosophy, ethics, and public policy. Their advice has informed a report, which can be read here.
Throughout the pandemic, Professor Geist has also provided regular commentary in the media on the challenges of balancing public health concerns with fundamental privacy rights. Moreover, his Lawbytes Podcast has welcomed experts on a variety of topics that address how the coronavirus touches the lives of Canadians through the lens of technology law.