A Curated List of COVID-19 Sources

Nature Overtakes Us

If there is interest in talking to us at OLI-works about the current COVID-19 pandemic, specifically to compare notes and share thoughts about how developments are occurring in your local area, feel welcome to contact us. We have launched an informal, OLI conversation with network members across Canada, the US and Europe. We charge a fee of $10.00 to cover technical costs, for each hour attendees outside our network join in.

The novel coronavirus that has emerged is named severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2). The disease it causes is named COVID-19.

To aid this discussion, we are compiling a short list of links (including video series) that we feel are valuable for those who are not trained in science; public policy for science, technology and health; or businesses in the life sciences. We state here that we have a preference for articles in science journals and information feeds from organizations that in both usual times and emergencies support science and technology (S&T). However some excellent reporting is ongoing by the news media and when we come across an exceptional article or are alerted to one, we review it and may add it to our list. At the same time, we do not wish to overwhelm readers. Maintaining a modest but credible resource pool for interested parties is our aim.

We will be sharing observations and insights on four tracks:  1) the science of infectious viruses that cause waves of disease in humans,  2) the preparedness of governments for pandemics,  3) diagnostics, tracing, therapeutics, medical devices and vaccines, and  4) developments in information and communication technology (ICT) that have a bearing on the foregoing.  The sources we point you to may cover one or more of these categories.

We sense a major convergence between life sciences research and intentions to re-shape global geo-politics.  This is a detective story and the proof is beyond us for now, but maybe you wish to join in the chase.

For day-to-day developments we assume that readers are consulting the authoritative sources such as the World Health Organization (WHO), ministries of public health in their own countries and regions, trusted journalists and the Coronavirus COVID-19 database at the Johns Hopkins Center for Systems Science and Engineering in the US.

For the record, the person who is holding the pen on this blog, Meg Barker, has a BSc in biology, specializing in cell biology, a year of graduate studies in biochemistry, and early career working experience at four different academic and government research laboratories in Canada. For the better part of her working life, after gaining an MA, she was responsible for areas in publicly-funded science and policy, and delivered projects and programs in Canada and abroad. While Meg cannot claim to be a scientific expert herself, as her laboratory research days are long past, she knows how to find experts and discern legitimate scientific reports from the general noise and clamour. Meg has also been an enthusiastic enabler of virtual teams, knowledge networks and “Communities of Practice” using ICT since the 1990’s. More about her here (scroll down).

In subsequent blogs we will present links to resources that we have reviewed. If you have come across articles that have been particularly useful in helping you understand the science of infectious viruses, the adequacy of the public health machinery or related international developments, please feel free to contact us with your suggestions. We will at minimum review these and may add them to the developing story.


Mar 24th, 2020

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