2021/ 2022

Ádám Földes

Mobility Phase: European Parliament, LIBE Committee | University of Amsterdam

Information Policies of the Coronavirus Crisis

Photo: Joanna Scheffel

Ádám Földes is a legal advisor of the Policy and Advocacy team at the international secretariat of Transparency International (TI). Previously, from 2013-2015 he was in charge of producing TI’s report on enforcement of the OECD Anti-Bribery Convention. Prior to that, he used to work in TI Hungary in various positions, including legal director and executive director. His field of anti-corruption expertise includes freedom of information, protection of whistleblowers, law enforcement, statutes of limitation, political financing, regulation of lobbying. He also led the Advocacy and Legal Advice Center of TI Hungary. Before TI, he also worked for Access Info Europe (Madrid, Spain) and led the Freedom of Information and Privacy Program of the Hungarian Civil Liberties Union.

Information Policies of the Coronavirus Crisis

It is the first time since World War II that countries on such a broad scale introduced some form of state of emergency and thereby imposed considerable restrictions on fundamental rights. In most EU countries state of emergency rules were not designed to regulate such long-lasting events and surveys show that EU citizens find restrictions of their individual freedoms less and less justified. It is not just a matter of perception, but in fact the restrictions of freedoms of information, expression, assembly and association are also a threat to democracy and rule of law. An enduring restriction of these freedoms weakens democratic discourse, undermines trust in government and thereby puts a strain on democratic political systems. Furthermore, the coronavirus crisis is also a national security matter; many countries consider it as a threat to the life of the nation. As a result, national security approaches and rules pervade civilian law-making and governance, while at the same time civilian governance also receives military aid. The subject of this project is how the underlying information policies of these emergency measures and restrictions address the above risks, as well as their compatibility with European and international human rights and rule of law standards.