Estimated reading time 1 min

Stopping a pandemic crisis requires bold and human-driven technology choices

Technology solutions selected for monitoring people during the coronavirus pandemic will have far-reaching impacts on human rights and democracy. The digital monitoring of people must be transparent and based on individuals’ consent. The IHAN project promotes digital solutions that strengthen trust.


Mira Nupponen


In exceptional situations such as the current global COVID-19 pandemic, reforms need to be made within hours instead of years. It is important to stay alert and remember that the choices we make now will have impacts long into the future. In addition to the economy, the crisis also affects politics and culture. What do we want post-crisis times to look like? What if digital monitoring of people during the crisis becomes the new norm?

“When people are given a choice between privacy and health, they will usually choose health,” Yuval Noah Harari wrote in an article published on the Financial Times website on 19 March. In a democracy, both must be ensured.

Jaana Sinipuro, Sitra’s Project Director for the IHAN – Fair data economy project, reflects on the long-term digital impacts of the crisis on European values and the objectives of a more human-driven data economy in her column in the online magazine of the Lapland University of Applied Sciences. We have the chance to choose our digital future, right now.

Interested? Read more in Jaana Sinipuro’s column published in the 2/2020 LUMEN online magazine.

What's this about?