COVID‑19, the rule of law and democracy. Analysis of legal responses to a global health crisis

Grogan, Joelle ORCID logoORCID: (2022) COVID‑19, the rule of law and democracy. Analysis of legal responses to a global health crisis. Hague Journal on the Rule of Law, 14 (2-3) . pp. 349-369. ISSN 1876-4045 [Article] (doi:10.1007/s40803-022-00168-8)

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The COVID-19 pandemic caused a severe strain on health systems globally, while simultaneously presenting a social, economic, legal, political, and regulatory challenge. Where the efficacy of pandemic laws adopted by governments are a matter of life and death, the urgency with which action needs to be taken during a pandemic creates a law-making environment which incentivises rapid action without scrutiny and the use of power without restraint. Under such conditions, adherence to the foundational values of democracy and the rule of law come under increased pressure if not threat. The demands of emergency provide a convenient guise and means of justification for the use of power which only serves to consolidate power within the executive to the detriment of the separation of powers and weakening of the institutions of liberal democracy. This article provides a preliminary analysis on how the global health crisis has affected the state of democracy and the rule of law. While the specific examples are drawn from across the globe to highlight common trends and concerns, specific highlight is given to the EU and its Member States. It offers an outlook on how to prepare for future emergencies by building on the lessons of the current one.

Item Type: Article
Research Areas: A. > School of Law
Item ID: 34904
Notes on copyright: © The Author(s) 2022
Open Access This article is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License, which permits use, sharing, adaptation, distribution and reproduction in any medium or format, as long as you give appropriate credit to the original author(s) and the source, provide a link to the Creative Commons licence, and indicate if changes were made. The images or other third party material in this article are included in the article's Creative Commons licence, unless indicated otherwise in a credit line to the material. If material is not included in the article's Creative Commons licence and your intended use is not permitted by statutory regulation or exceeds the permitted use, you will need to obtain permission directly from the copyright holder. To view a copy of this licence, visit
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Depositing User: Joelle Grogan
Date Deposited: 24 Mar 2022 13:31
Last Modified: 05 Dec 2022 10:52

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