You May not be Interested in COVID, but COVID is Interested in You


  • James F. Keeley, Ph.D. University of Calgary


The COVID-19 pandemic has presented a clear threat to the lives of individual Albertans; together with the measures taken in response, it has posed a clear threat to their economic circumstances while uncovering existing social fissures in terms of the variable vulnerability of sub-populations to both the virus and those response measures. It qualifies as a significant security threat on these levels. In responding to this threat, the Alberta government marshalled its institutional resources and had to adapt them to circumstances of a scale and type last seen one hundred years ago. It had to do so under economic and political conditions that already presented significant challenges, and that were in some cases strongly exacerbated by its policy choices and their consequences. Finally, it had to do so in the face of strong, yet often contradictory, public pressures. These challenges and difficulties found in the microcosm of a single Canadian province in confronting a specific sort of problem may be of interest and use in considering the prospect, particularly of future, especially non-traditional, security challenges.

Author Biography

James F. Keeley, Ph.D., University of Calgary

Dr. James Keeley is Associate Professor Emeritus of Political Science at the University of Calgary. His research interests are primarily in the theory of international regimes and nuclear non-proliferation, including safeguards and verification issues.