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COVID-19

  • Doctor with a woman and a baby

    Waiving COVID vaccine patent rights? It’s complicated

    December 27, 2021

    Harvard Law Today recently spoke to Professors Terry Fisher and Ruth Okediji about COVID-19 vaccine challenges in the global south, waiving drug-maker patents, and what they propose to reform the system in time for the next pandemic.

  • Group of elementary children studying with a teacher at school during coronavirus pandemic

    Investigating mask mandate bans

    September 13, 2021

    Michael Ashley Stein ’88, executive director of the Harvard Law School Project on Disability, says the Department of Education should go beyond the Americans with Disabilities Act in investigating state bans against mandating face coverings in schools.

  • Close up shot of twenty dollars bills

    A rising tide?

    August 3, 2021

    Harvard Law Professor and Federal Reserve Board veteran Daniel K. Tarullo discusses inflation and the United States’ economic recovery.

  • Notice of eviction on door of house

    Eviction moratorium’s end could cause homelessness or housing insecurity for ‘millions of families’

    July 30, 2021

    Harvard Legal Aid Bureau’s Courtney J. Brunson and Vincent Montoya-Armanios discuss the impending expiration of the federal pause on evictions.

  • Eviction notice on door of house

    Harvard Negotiation and Mediation Clinical Program and ABA jointly release report on best practices for eviction diversion

    June 25, 2021

    The Harvard Negotiation and Mediation Clinical Program and the American Bar Association have jointly released a report on best practices for eviction diversion.

  • An elderly man sitting in a wheelchair in the corridor near the window

    Harvard Law School Project on Disability provides legal support during pandemic

    June 7, 2021

    Knowing that people with disabilities would be especially vulnerable during the pandemic to problems with healthcare access and other issues, the Harvard Law School Project on Disability turned its attention early on to COVID-related initiatives and advocacy.

  • Desk calendar on May 2021 with a red pin on the 17th which is marked

    Tax Day is here

    May 12, 2021

    Keith Fogg, clinical professor at Harvard Law School, and his students in the Federal Tax Clinic, answered questions about some common issues taxpayers are facing this pandemic year, helping low-income taxpayers, and President Biden’s proposed tax code changes.

  • Male patient getting an injection in the upper arm from a doctor wearing blue gloves.

    Evaluating President Biden’s first 100 days: Health care and the pandemic

    April 28, 2021

    I. Glenn Cohen ’03 and Carmel Shachar J.D./M.P.H. ’10 of the Petrie-Flom Center for Health Law Policy, Biotechnology, and Bioethics discuss the Biden administration's healthcare agenda.

  • Martha Minow and Emily Broad Leib

    COVID and the law: What have we learned?

    March 17, 2021

    The effect of COVID-19 on the law has been transformative and wide-ranging, but as a Harvard Law School panel pointed out on the one-year anniversary of campus shutdown, the changes haven’t all been for the worse.

  • A line of people waiting to get their vaccine.

    Calling the shots

    March 17, 2021

    Disheartened by tales from family and friends frustrated by his home state of Pennsylvania's vaccine distribution system, Seth Rubinstein ’22, a second year student at Harvard Law School, knew he wanted to get involved.

  • Eviction notice and a face mask on a wooden table.

    Advocating from afar

    February 18, 2021

    Despite working remotely, first-year students with Harvard Law School's Tenant Advocacy Project gained meaningful skills and successfully helped clients during the fall semester student practice organization.

  • Closeup of man smoking and wearing a mask

    Should smokers be prioritized for COVID vaccine?

    February 2, 2021

    Should smoking be among the pre-existing health risks that qualify people for priority access to the COVID-19 vaccine? Harvard Law public health expert Carmel Shachar says the answer is yes. 

  • Sample contents of a Farmers to Families food box

    Food Law and Policy Clinic releases report evaluating Farmers to Families Food Box Program

    February 2, 2021

    In their new report, An Evaluation of the Farmers to Families Food Box Program, Harvard's Food Law and Policy Clinic and the National Sustainable Agriculture Coalition highlight opportunities to make the program more equitable and effective amid the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond.

  • Harvard and Yale health law centers partner for COVID-19 seminar series

    January 28, 2021

    The Petrie-Flom Center at Harvard Law School is joining forces with the Solomon Center for Health Law and Policy, its counterpart at Yale Law School, to host a seminar series reflecting on ethical and legal issues raised by the COVID-19 pandemic.

  • Bulungula South Africa

    Teaming up to promote access to water

    December 9, 2020

    As the only team members on their International Human Rights Clinic project, Laura Soundy ’22 and Rehab Abdelwahab ’21 have learned how critical it is to talk about subjects other than law. In doing so, they learned they were both quarantining in Texas, and have formed a plan to safely meet in person next year.

  • Judge Julie M. Lynch presides over a courtroom remotely

    Online courts: reimagining the future of justice

    December 4, 2020

    Even if there was no COVID-19, online courts would still be the wave of the future: This idea was the starting point for a recent webinar, “Online Courts: Perspectives from the Bench and the Bar,” a half-day event convened by the Harvard Law School Center on the Legal Profession.

  • criminal justice illustrations

    ‘This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity for change’

    November 19, 2020

    HLS faculty on COVID-19 and the pressing questions of racism, racial injustice, and abuse of power that have driven this difficult year—and that are the focus of three new lecture series at the school.

  • 2020 Chayes Fellows

    Research, writing, and advocating for change

    October 28, 2020

    Despite the pandemic, the 2020 Chayes International Public Service Fellows pursued projects around the world.

  • voting box with a lock

    Simulating responses to election disinformation

    October 14, 2020

    In an effort to combat multiple potential vectors of attack on the 2020 U.S. election, two Berkman Klein Center affiliates have published a package of “tabletop exercises,” freely available to decisionmakers and the public to simulate realistic scenarios in which disinformation threatens to disrupt the 2020 election.

  • FDA headquarters in Washington DC

    Building public trust in a coronavirus vaccine

    October 6, 2020

    In an interview with Harvard Law Today, Carmel Shachar, executive director of the Petrie-Flom Center for Health Policy, Biotechnology, and Bioethics at Harvard Law School, says that political interference in the FDA’s process for ensuring that a vaccine is both safe and effective “opens the door to a public health disaster.”

  • Woman leading a group of demonstrators on road

    Race and Health: Panelists examine the connection between law and racial vulnerability to COVID-19

    September 30, 2020

    The COVID-19 pandemic has laid bare the health disparities that result from systemic and structural racism. But while the law has created these disparities, it may also provide opportunities to correct them.

  • Rear view of a man wearing medical mask placing a sign saying:

    How COVID-19 has changed the workplace in 2020

    September 8, 2020

    Sharon Block and Ben Sachs of Harvard Law School's Labor and Worklife Program discuss COVID-19’s continued impact on the workplace and worker’s rights to a safe and healthy work environment.

  • Professor Cass R. Sunstein ’78

    Cass Sunstein tapped to chair WHO technical advisory group

    August 24, 2020

    Cass Sunstein ’78, the Robert Walmsley University Professor at Harvard, has been tapped by the World Health Organization to chair its Technical Advisory Group on Behavioural Insights and Sciences for Health.

  • COVID State of Play

    ‘Feeding the virus’?

    July 30, 2020

    “Confused,” “frustrating,” “fragmented,” “acute,” and “a reckoning” were just some of the ways three health care experts described the U.S. response to the coronavirus pandemic during a recent Berkman Klein virtual discussion.

  • Human Rights in a Time of Populism cover image

    Human Rights in a Time of Populism and COVID-19

    June 30, 2020

    Harvard Law School's Human Rights Program recently spoke with Professor Gerald Neuman about how he sees the landscape changing for countries with populist leaders in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic.

  • Hands holding prison bars

    Pandemic has exacerbated longstanding problems with the prison system

    June 9, 2020

    COVID-19 presents a unique threat to people in prisons and jails, agreed panelists at “Incarcerated Populations and COVID-19: Public Health, Ethical, and Legal Concerns,” a webinar hosted by Harvard Law School’s Petrie-Flom Center for Health Law Policy, Biotechnology, and Bioethics.

  • Finding a new approach to summer work abroad

    June 2, 2020

    Two 2020 Chayes Fellows discuss the changes, and challenges, in their plans.

  • Refugee camp in Cox's Bazaar, Bangladesh

    Advocating for human rights in Myanmar during COVID-19

    May 6, 2020

    In a Q&A, Yee Htun, clinical instructor in the International Human Rights Clinic, talks about systemic discrimination and violence against ethnic Rohingya in Myanmar and how Rohingya refugees are coping in the midst of a global pandemic.

  • Multicolored hands layered over each other

    How can law students help in the midst of COVID-19?

    April 29, 2020

    Lee Mestre helped to coordinate Harvard Law School student aid efforts after natural disasters in New Orleans and Puerto Rico. Now she's using that experience to help law students support people in Massachusetts affected by the COVID-19 crisis.

  • Cartoon of a hand holding up a white flag

    Easing the economic aftermath of a global pandemic

    April 28, 2020

    Mark Roe and John Coates recently spoke with Harvard Law Today about what could be done to lower the chances of a U.S. bankruptcy backlog and how other corporate governance challenges posed by the pandemic should be handled.

  • Petrie-Flom 2020 student fellows

    At year-end celebration, Petrie-Flom student fellows present their independent research projects

    April 27, 2020

    Student fellows at the Petrie-Flom Center for Health Law Policy, Biotechnology, and Bioethics recently celebrated their fellowships’ end virtually when their capstone meeting moved to Zoom due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

  • Sign that points to the climate and USA in opposite directions

    No ‘silver lining’ for the climate

    April 21, 2020

    Jody Freeman discusses the progress the nation has made in protecting the environment since Earth Day was founded in 1970, the Trump administration’s efforts to undo Obama-era federal climate regulations, and COVID-19’s urgent lessons for the planet’s health.

  • Sabrina Singh at the UN headquarters in Geneva

    Sabrina Singh ’20 draws attention to the looming COVID-19 crisis in Nepal

    April 17, 2020

    Born and raised in Nepal, Sabrina Singh ’20 has been speaking out about how the COVID-19 pandemic could exacerbate conditions in her home country.

  • Illustration of people being tracked by their cell phones.

    How much access to data should be permitted during the COVID-19 pandemic?

    April 14, 2020

    The Berkman Klein Center for Internet & Society at Harvard University is currently taking the lead in the effort to explore the ways data can be mined to increase understanding of COVID-19 and to fight it more efficiently.

  • Professor Charles Fried

    Charles Fried addresses Trump administration’s ‘contempt for the rule of law’

    April 10, 2020

    Harvard Law Professor Charles Fried, who served as solicitor general under President Ronald Reagan, joined 21 other conservative or libertarian attorneys in a statement condemning inspector general Michael Atkinson’s ouster as part of a “continuous assault on the rule of law.”

  • Researchers release first detailed survey on the effects of the coronavirus pandemic on correctional facilities in the United States

    April 9, 2020

    A collaboration between Harvard University researchers and the National Commission on Correctional Health Care has yielded the first detailed survey on the effects of the coronavirus pandemic on correctional facilities in the United States.

  • Eric Winstons set up for remote learning in kitchen

    Remote learning: Week One

    April 1, 2020

    HLS students reflect on their first week of online classes.

  • Delivering food ordered online while in home isolation during quarantine. Stay home we deliver sign on box.

    Waste not, want not

    April 1, 2020

    Harvard Law School Professor Emily Broad Leib ’08, director of the HLS Food Law and Policy Clinic, and her students have been working furiously to ensure that the most vulnerable—and ultimately the rest of us—are fed during the COVID-19 pandemic.

  • Austin Hall

    Harvard Law School extends deadline to apply for Junior Deferral Program

    March 25, 2020

    Amid the COVID-19 pandemic, the Harvard Law School J.D. Admissions Office announced last week that the deadline to apply for the School’s Junior Deferral Program has been postponed by two months, and clarified that pass/fail grades in spring 2020 will not harm an applicant’s chances of admission.

  • Protecting rights in a global crisis

    March 25, 2020

    In a Q&A, scholars at the Petrie-Flom Center for Health Law Policy, Biotechnology, and Bioethics at Harvard Law School raise important legal and ethical questions about health care delivery and the enactment of extraordinary public health measures in response to the ongoing epidemic.

  • surveillance camera street art

    We need privacy and data laws to tackle this global pandemic

    March 23, 2020

    In the Berkman Klein Center's Medium collection, BKC fellow and S.J.D. candidate Beatriz Botero Arcila talks about governments' use of digital technologies and big data analytics in addressing the COVID-19 pandemic.

  • Illustration of faces on a laptop screen with hands typing on the keyboard.

    The move to online learning

    March 23, 2020

    Professor Jeannie Suk Gersen discusses switching her classroom to remote learning.

  • Statue of Liberty with American flag and helicopter flying.

    Restricting civil liberties amid the COVID-19 pandemic

    March 21, 2020

    As federal and state governments take measures to curtail public activity during the COVID-19 outbreak, Charles Fried and Nancy Gertner agree that the restriction on individual freedom is largely appropriate for the circumstance.

  • Feldman, Lazarus discuss where public health stops and individual liberties begin

    March 18, 2020

    Noah Feldman and Richard Lazarus ’79 discuss public health and civil liberties in the time of COVID-19 on Feldman's Deep Background podcast.

  • Man sitting at a desk, bookshelves behind him.

    A Q&A on Harvard Law School’s response to coronavirus

    March 13, 2020

    Harvard University and Harvard Law School will shift to remote teaching and learning on March 23 as part of efforts to limit the spread of the coronavirus in the community while continuing to educate its students. Matt Gruber, Harvard Law School dean for administration, discusses the “unprecedented move to deal with unprecedented circumstances.”

  • Coronavirus (COVID-19): Information for Harvard Law School students, faculty and staff

    March 12, 2020

    Although the University’s coronavirus website will continue to be the primary source of information about the institution’s overall preparations for and response to the coronavirus, these questions and answers are designed to provide additional context for members of the Harvard Law School community. We will continue to update these FAQs as new information becomes available.