As new COVID-19 cases multiply and the death tolls mount daily, uncertainties trigged by the pandemic ripple outward. A new online speaker series, developed by the College of Arts and Sciences and the Center for Research on Vermont, addresses some of these implications, such as health policy, economics, human relationships, politics and international relations.  

“All of us have been deeply affected by this crisis,” says Richard Watts, director of the Center for Research on Vermont and organizer of the ExpertsLive series. “Arts and Sciences faculty have valuable perspectives about the human and social dimensions of COVID-19, so we’ve put together a series that draws on their expertise from a wide range of disciplines.”

The series kicked off the first week of April with the program “Pandemics in an Age of Resurgent Nationalism,” presented by Pablo Bose, director of UVM’s Global and Regional Studies program and a professor of geography. 

Bose spoke about the re-emergence of figurative and literal boundaries between nations in the wake of a virus that doesn’t respect barriers. He said the promise of a borderless world where people, goods and services could move easily between nations has been made obsolete by the pandemic.

“There were claims that the Brexit movement in Britain would create a cascading domino effect–that other member of the EU would simply seek to leave,” Bose said. “In the face of this pandemic there are many in Europe who have questioned what this project of European common identity really means when Italy and Spain find themselves going it alone...where they reach out to other members for assistance and are essentially rebuffed.” 

Other live talks are scheduled on upcoming Thursdays at noon. Review the schedule and past programs on the ExpertsLive website. Each session lasts for about 20 minutes, followed by an online question-and-answer period.

Thursday, April 9: The Stimulus: Who Benefits
Stephanie Seguino, Professor of Economics

Thursday, April 16: Government Power in Times of Crisis
Lisa Homes, Professor of Political Science

Thursday, April 23: Impacts of Stay-at-Home Policies on Children and their Families

Betsy Hoza, Bishop Joyce Chair of Human Development, Professor of Psychology

Thursday, April 30: Latin America, the Mexico-US Border and COVID-19
Caroline Beer, Professor of Political Science

Thursday May 7: Weather, Climate and COVID-19:
Lesley-Ann Dupigny-Giroux, Professor of Geography (Fellow of the American Meteorological Society and President-elect of the American Association of State Climatologists)


Kevin Coburn