The Law, Economics, and Policy of the COVID-19 Pandemic

As the COVID-19 pandemic and society’s response to it unfold, we are confronted in real time with some of the limits — and some of the wonders — of modern society. The host of restrictions imposed by governments on movement and social gathering in order to contain the virus, for example, are having significant adverse economic effects, and revealing previously unknown (or under-appreciated) fault lines in societies and economies around the globe. But at the same time we are also witnessing a remarkable wave of innovative, compassionate, and energetic responses in both the public and private sectors, demonstrating the fundamental resilience and dynamism of society.

Perhaps most obviously, the health crisis presented by COVID-19, as well as the policies implemented to address it, have highlighted the already central role of information, digital, telecommunications, platform, network, Internet, and related technologies in modern life. But with that heightened role come new challenges in terms of the regulation of technology and the governance (both public and private) of the businesses, people, capital, and intangible assets dedicated to those technologies and their ongoing innovation.

As public and private decision-makers continue to address these challenges — and many others brought on by the pandemic — it is important to understand what can and should be done by both public and private entities, as well as to take stock of what innovative ideas have been implemented and their consequences.

Truth on the Market and the International Center for Law & Economics (ICLE) are thus inaugurating an ongoing series — a scholarly symposium of indefinite duration and indeterminate scope — on the law, economics, and policy of the COVID-19 pandemic. The series will consider the opportunities for (and challenges to) technology and governance innovation in response to the pandemic, and the tradeoffs for each involved in the range of legal, economic, and policy responses that emerge.

We will continue to invite new participants and address new issues as the crisis unfolds. As we line up new participants and as their contributions are posted we will update this page; you will always be able to find the most recent post in the series at the top of the page here: (with previous posts in reverse chronological order below it).

Confirmed Participants

  • Ian Adams, Executive Director, ICLE
  • Dirk Auer, Senior Fellow of Law & Economics, ICLE
  • Jane Bambauer, Professor of Law, University of Arizona James E. Rogers College of Law
  • Corbin Barthold, Senior Litigation Counsel, Washington Legal Foundation
  • Sam Bowman, Director of Competition Policy, ICLE
  • Tim Brennan, Professor, Economics & Public Policy, University of Maryland; former FCC; former FTC
  • Steve Cernak, Partner, Bona Law
  • Eline Chivot, Senior Policy Analyst, Center for Data Innovation, Information Technology and Innovation Foundation.
  • Miranda Perry Fleischer, Professor Law and Co-Director of Tax Programs, University of San Diego School of Law. 
  • Luke Froeb, William C. Oehmig Chair in Free Enterprise and Entrepreneurship, Owen Graduate School of Management, Vanderbilt University; former Chief Economist at the US DOJ Antitrust Division and US FTC
  • Eric Fruits, Chief Economist, ICLE; Adjunct Professor of Economics, Portland State University
  • Thomas Hazlett, H.H. Macaulay Endowed Professor of Economics, John E. Walker Department of Economics, Clemson University
  • Justin “Gus” Hurwitz, Associate Professor of Law & Co-director, Space, Cyber, and Telecom Law Program, University of Nebraska; Director of Law & Economics Programs, ICLE
  • Mark  Jamison, Director and Gunter Professor, Public Utility Research Center, University of Florida; Visiting Scholar with the American Enterprise Institute.
  • Robert Litan, Non-resident Senior Fellow, Economic Studies, The Brookings Institution; former Associate Director, OMB
  • Dan Lyons, Professor of Law, Boston College Law School
  • Geoffrey A. Manne, President, ICLE; Distinguished Fellow, Northwestern University Center on Law, Business, and Economics
  • Valentin Mircea, Senior Partner, Mircea & Partners Law Firm; Visiting Fellow, European University Institute, Robert Schuman Centre for Advanced Studies
  • Julian Morris, Director of Innovation Policy, ICLE
  • John Newman, Associate Professor, University of Miami School of Law; Advisory Board Member, American Antitrust Institute; Affiliated Fellow, Thurman Arnold Project, Yale; Former Trial Attorney, DOJ Antitrust Division.
  • Noah Phillips, Commissioner, Federal Trade Commission
  • Will Rinehart, Senior Research Fellow, Center for Growth and Opportunity
  • Daniel Rodriguez, Harold Washington Professor & former Dean, Northwestern Pritzker School of Law
  • Ramaz Samrout, Principal, REIM Strategies; Lay Member, Competition Tribunal of Canada
  • Hal Singer, Managing Director, econONE; Adjunct Professor, Georgeown University, McDonough School of Business
  • Brent Skorup, Senior Research Fellow, Mercatus Center, George Mason University
  • Ben Sperry, Associate Director of Legal Research, ICLE
  • Kristian Stout, Associate Director, ICLE
  • Daniel Takash, Regulatory policy fellow at the Niskanen Center. He is the manager of Niskanen’s Captured Economy Project
  • David Thaw, Associate Research Professor of Law, Assistant Research Professor of Computing & Information, University of Pittsburgh; Faculty Director and Founder, CyREN Laboratory; Affiliated Fellow, Information Society Project, Yale Law School
  • Charlotte Tschider, Visiting Professor, University of Nebraska College of Law
  • Christine Wilson, Comissioner, Federal Trade Commission
  • Ramsi Woodcock, Assistant Professor of Law, University of Kentucky; Assistant Professor of Management, Gatton College of Business and Economics
  • Matt Zwolinski, Professor of Philosophy, University of San Diego; founder and director, USD Center for Ethics, Economics, and Public Policy; founder and contributor, Bleeding Heart Libertarians Blog.

Series Posts (in order of posting)