European Health Security Post-Brexit? Challenges and Prospects for Epistemic Integration

Thursday, July 13, 2017
WMB - Gannochy Seminar Room 3 (University of Glasgow)
John Connolly , School of Media, Culture and Society, University of the West of Scotland
The UK have tended to be key architects of EU health security governance policies (across both animal and public health dimensions) due to their experience of managing and ‘learning lessons’ from successive threats and crises. These threats/crises have included avian influenza outbreaks and pandemic influenza (swine flu). Such experiences have shown to be influential at the EU level in terms of shaping health security policy frameworks (mainly through the European Commission’s health security committee).  What is also appearing is that UK expertise regarding health governance has been very influential for EU public policy-making in this area given that significant amount capacities and expertise in disease control and management are UK-based (e.g. through UK Reference Laboratories and expertise within agencies such as Public Health England and Animal and Plant Health Agency). Previous research has highlighted how UK expertise has helped to support smaller and/or less developed EU Member States when it comes to health security preparedness and management.

However, this paper examines the extent to which epistemic cooperation will be sustainable in the post-Brexit context. We might think that, given diseases do not respect borders, any political contestation/conflict regarding cooperation in such areas of public policy would be minimal. In reality, however, the sharing of expertise, data and information cannot be taken for granted. This paper explores this problematic with a particular focus on the post-Brexit challenges for epistemic cooperation and integration.

  • CEU paper_Dr John Connolly.pdf (506.1 kB)