BW Lecture 2022

Branco Weiss Lecture 2022

Epidemics and Pandemics: The Big Challenge

In 2020 the Covid-19 pandemic hit the world full blow, a world that particularly in the global North had experienced an 80-years period with a relatively low number of epidemics and pandemics. In earlier times, people had lived with the permanent threat of infectious diseases without efficient instruments to fight them and human societies were shaped accordingly. However, the patterns of infection and how we respond to such health crises have changed dramatically, even within the last 10 years.

The emergence of the COVID-19 pandemic led to unprecedented collaborative scientific efforts, real-time implementation of science-driven policies, and expedited technological advances. Drawing on the perspectives of various fields of research, the five fellows Thomas Van Boeckel, Moritz Kraemer, Tetyana Vasylyeva, Cara Brook, and Klaus Eyer will analyse some of these issues while this crisis has not yet ended, nor is it likely to be our last.