“A once-in-a-lifetime pandemic” En kvalitativ studie av Världshälsoorganisationens säkerhetisering av covid-19
Sammanfattning: On December 31st Chinese authorities notified the World Health Organization the discovery of a novel coronavirus. The virus, now known as covid-19, has since spread across the world and resulted in over 300 000 deaths globally. The disease and its consequences have been called “unprecedented” in our modern history, including an economic crisis, high unemployment and last but not least, disastrous amounts of lives lost. Diseases and other phenomena, such as environment, inequality and economy, with similarly stark effects on unemployment, safety and mortality are increasingly understood as security issues. While diseases are different from traditional security threats (war), being described as a threat changes our response to the disease. Framing an issue as a security threat enables the possibility for emergency treatment and funding. Moreover, with pandemics equal to covid-19 being expected to increase for years to come, it is a subject worth studying from multiple perspectives, including a security perspective. This thesis aims to examine how the World Health Organization created a security threat around covid-19 using securitization theory as a theoretical framework. By employing discourse analysis this study analyzed press conferences held by WHO in the outset of covid-19. The results show securitization moves made by the World Health Organization, although cannot conclude that a consummate securitization of covid-19 took place. By exploring the discursive strategies used by WHO during press conferences the results of this study identified an initiated securitization process which could be subject for future research on the link between covid-19 and security.
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