The digital safety net: citizens and technology in the age of Covid-19

9 April 2020 10:00 - 11:30 GMT+1 (BST)


Jonathan Tanner @Tannerjc – Research Associate, Digital Societies, ODI



Oscar Tapp Scotting @DCMS – Deputy Director, Security & Online Harms, UK Government Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport

Maureen Stickel – Associate Director and Head of Zambia, IDinsight

Calvin Chong – Director of International Affairs, Ministry of Communications and Information of the Republic of Singapore, @SingaporeMCI


The urgency of the Covid-19 threat is increasing the demand for governments to use existing technologies in new ways and to use untested new technologies on urgent problems. The use of these technologies are part of a rapidly deployed ‘digital safety net’ aimed at saving lives and protecting citizens. Without the usual time available to test new ideas it is more important than ever that best practice is identified and shared. 

This event contributes to further thinking about the role of digital technology in providing a safety net in times of crisis, the essential components of the safety net and newly designed technology being used to respond to the Covid-19 crisis.

We explore perspectives from different geographies and address critical lessons covering three aspects of the crisis response: tackling the virus, social protection and public information.