Call for Papers! Politics and Pandemics.

Special Issue:  Politics & Pandemics


Global Public Health invites the submission of articles for a special issue on the theme Politics & Pandemics   

This special issue will examine the political dimensions of pandemics (primarily but not exclusively) in relation to COVID-19. It will also be open to papers that explore – either comparatively or individually – other pandemic and epidemic outbreaks that raise similar political questions. A broad range of disciplinary perspectives will be presented, giving consideration to the ways in which economic, social and cultural factors intersect with the politics of pandemics, both globally and in specific national and local settings.

Above all, the issue will seek to highlight the influence of power, capitalism and the importance of inequalities in shaping the course of the COVID-19 and other pandemics, as well as collective responses. We invite submissions that explore a broad range of topics running from governance and policy to surveillance and public health programs and interventions.

It will offer insights into the ways in which the COVID-19 pandemic is disrupting long-standing assumptions and power relations in the field of global public health – and the extent to which confronting it will require the reinvention of this field as it has taken shape in the early 21st century. 

Submissions may explore these themes broadly or address them through focused studies on topics including, but not limited to:

1.      Critical analytical and historic analyses of global governance systems in relation to pandemics and pandemic responses

2.      Empirical studies of the political consequences of emerging pandemics, both globally and locally

3.      Case studies of political battlegrounds and tensions shaping the response to the COVID-19 pandemic in specific regions, countries or cities

4.      Comparative studies of the political forces and processes shaping the response to the COVID-19 pandemic across a number of different sites

5.      Analyses of the relationship between the COVID-19 pandemic and recent trends in populist politics, political polarization and rupture in liberal democracies

6.      Examinations of the pandemic’s relation with and impact on global commerce, intellectual property rights, and the governance of public health emergencies

7.      Critical analyses of the political economy of contemporary capitalist formations, the role of Big Pharma and the social and economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic

8.      Studies of social responses to emerging pandemics, including panic, stigma and discrimination, innovation and solidarity

9.      Analyses and original research of the impact of the pandemic on the political economy of gender and sexuality, including markets, medias, networks and mobilizations

10.    Studies on the impact of COVID-19 on science, biomedical research and business and economic interests that both structure and flow out of the research enterprise.

11.    Assessment into the role of technology, surveillance and COVID-19 related data collection, with particular attention to who gets counted and why

12.    Studies focusing on the role of state and non-state actors in politics and policy related to pandemic responses, including attention to the role of CBOs and NGOs, philanthropic organizations and academic institutions

13.    Historical and comparative studies of earlier pandemics and epidemic outbreaks (such as Influenza, HIV, Ebola, Zika and/or others) and the current COVID-19 pandemic  

Abstract submission by July 15th, 2020:  Please submit unstructured abstracts of 200 words maximum for consideration to by July 15th, 2020, with e-mail subject line “Politics and Pandemics Special Issue Abstract”.  Include a working title, abstract, author names, their primary affiliations, and a contact e-mail address. 

Authors selected for submission of full manuscripts will be notified by August 15th, 2020.  Selected authors should submit full manuscripts by October 15th, 2020, following the submission instructions available on the journal’s website ( 

Please note that all submissions must be made in English.  Unfortunately, the journal does not have the necessary resources to publish in other languages, and we are therefore able to accept submissions only in English.

Enquiries:  For enquiries, please email

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