Evaluating the Governance of Emergent Pandemic Zoonoses: A Systems and Legal Analysis of Wildlife Markets

Penney, Tarra L | $446,912

Ontario York University 2020 CIHR Operating Grant

Although mitigating the current pandemic is critically important, a governance response is needed to prevent future pandemics. We need actionable evidence that focuses on the regulation of wildlife trade from which SARS and SARS-Cov2 are believed to have emerged. Specifically understanding the social, legal and cultural dynamics that affect the regulation of wildlife markets in countries where zoonotic epidemics (Ebola) and pandemics (SARs, and SAR CoV-2) emerged, including China, the Democratic Republic of the Congo and the Philippines. Therefore, the purpose of this project will be to evaluate the governance gap in stewardship of international wildlife trade supply chains given their implications for food and health security by analyzing the intersection of global biodiversity, environmental, agricultural and public health governance systems. Within each participating country an institutional and legal epidemiologic analysis will provide policy surveillance and mapping of international and national policy. A systems analysis will be used to identify local contextual interdependencies among laws, regulations, and their implications for the behaviour of social and political actors and communities supplemented by in-depth qualitative case studies. The empirical evidence from these analyses will be integrated into a report and set of policy recommendations that will be utilized in a process to inform the development of a policy design and implementation toolkit for international organizations, national and local stakeholders who will be engaged throughout the research process.

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