Strategic conversation with Marc Van Ranst, Virologist and Member of the Group of Experts for an Exit Strategy

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Strategic conversation with Marc Van Ranst, Virologist and Member of the Group of Experts for an Exit Strategy

About

While Europe is slowly moving beyond confinement at home, COVID-19 continues to pose many questions for policymakers and citizens alike. As the global race for a vaccine intensifies, the issues of ‘vaccine nationalism’ and trust in vaccines become even more vital. Vaccine refusal is a huge problem in Europe – in France, for example, 26% of survey respondents would refuse a COVID-19 vaccine. This Strategic Conversation with Marc Van Ranst, Virologist and Member of the Group of Experts for an Exit Strategy (GEES), will look at how we learn to live with COVID-19 and manage future disease outbreaks.

This new Strategic Conversations series invites key policymakers to share their views on a range of important and strategically relevant issues through interviews with senior thinkers on the Friends of Europe team.


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Schedule

Schedule

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Strategic conversation with Marc Van Ranst, Virologist and Member of the Group of Experts for an Exit Strategy (GEES)
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Questions include:

  • What should be done to bolster global efforts in the race for a vaccine and prevent ‘vaccine nationalism’?
  • What should policymakers and pharmaceutical companies do to ensure that a potential COVID-19 vaccine or treatment is available to everyone?
  • If and when a vaccine is available, should it be mandatory?

speaker

Marc Van Ranst

Head of the Laboratory of Clinical and Epidemiological Virology at the University Hospitals Leuven

Moderator

Tamsin Rose

Senior Fellow at Friends of Europe

End of conversation
Speakers

Speakers

Marc Van Ranst
Marc Van Ranst

Head of the Laboratory of Clinical and Epidemiological Virology at the University Hospitals Leuven

Show more information on Marc Van Ranst

Undoubtedly Belgium’s coolest scientist, Marc Van Ranst is a virologist, vaccination champion and activist. In addition to his current roles at KULeuven, Van Ranst sits on the Scientific Committee Coronavirus, which advises the Belgian government on the country’s management of the COVID-19 pandemic. He previously served as the president of the Vaccination Section of the Belgian High Council for Public Health for fifteen years. Van Ranst is very active on social media, where he is outspoken about raising awareness on COVID measures and vaccination, as well as strongly committed to fighting racism and homophobia. Dubbed the ‘virus hero’ by media for his crucial role during the pandemic, Van Ranst was even depicted as a ‘superhero’ fighting anti-lockdown nationalists in a viral video. As the saying goes, not all heroes wear capes: some wear lab coats.

Photo of Tamsin Rose
Tamsin Rose

Senior Fellow at Friends of Europe

Show more information on Tamsin Rose

Tamsin Rose is Senior Fellow at Friends of Europe. Having studied international relations, she has 25 years of experience working across the European continent from Ireland to Mongolia. A natural communicator, Tamsin has been a radio reporter, worked on press for the EU Delegation in Moscow and is currently a member of the external speaker team for the European Commission Directorate General for Communication, describing how the EU works and key policies to visitor groups from around the world. Since 2002 she has specialised in public health and public participation issues, serving as Secretary General of the European Public Health Alliance (EPHA), and providing strategic advice for health groups on how to engage successfully with the EU.

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