CfP: Modelling the Covid-19 Pandemic: Epidemiological, Epistemological and Ethical Challenges

 Guest Editors:

Francesco Barone Adesi (Crimedim, Research Center in Emergency and Disaster Medicine, University of Eastern Piedmont)

Margherita Benzi (Department of Law and Political, Economic and Social Sciences, University of Eastern Piedmont)

Raffaella Campaner (Department of Philosophy and Communication Studies, University of Bologna)


Invited Contributors

Virginia Ghiara (Early Intervention Foundation)

Tyll Grüne-Yanoff (Royal Institute of Technology, Stockholm)

Carlo Martini (Università Vita e Salute, Milan)

Elena Rocca (Norwegian University of Life Sciences)

Paolo Vineis (Imperial College, London)

Deadline for submission:  April 30th, 2021

Notification of acceptance:  June 30th, 2021

Description: The emergence of the Covid-19 pandemic has prompted a wide-ranging reflection in many disciplines, from medicine to sociology and economics. Many scholars in different fields have contributed from various points of view and in different manners to the understanding of the pandemic, and philosophers too have taken an active part in the debate, addressing methodological, conceptual and ethical issues. The persistence of the Covid-19 pandemic worldwide, with its serious impact on individual and social lives, urges further reflections and calls for theoretical tools to address an increasingly complex situation. This special issue aims to present critical investigations of different modelling strategies, trying to answer questions arising from the difficulty of understanding the pandemic and the way in which it is evolving. Examining how evidence is collected, how models are elaborated, evaluated and transmitted will shed some light on the risks of our uncertain reasoning in the current context, on scientific expertise and individual trust, and on trade-offs between health prevention and economic measures.

Questions tackled in the issue might include—but will not be limited to—the following:

 Which models of the pandemic are competing to give the best representation?

 How can models be based on risk analysis in uncertainty of data and models?

 Which biases may impinge on the construction of models of the pandemic?

 How can normative values influence the construction of a model, and how could this influence be made transparent?

 How can we evaluate different models of the development of the pandemic?

– How can philosophers contribute to our understanding of the pandemic?

 How can we trust experts, and which expertise is relevant to understanding a pandemic?

– Does a shift from a short-run to a long-run perspective on the pandemic impinge on the elaboration, dissemination and evaluation of models?


Instructions: Articles must be written in English and should not exceed 8000 words. For the presentation of their articles, authors are requested to take into account the instructions available under Information for Authors. Submissions must be suitable for blind review. Each submission should also include a brief abstract of no more than 250 words and four keywords for indexing purposes. Notification of intent to submit, including both a title and a brief summary of the content, would be greatly appreciated, as it will assist with the coordination and planning of the special issue.