The Covid-19 pandemic has seen the marked centralization and exertion of executive power, and, more broadly, a focus on the response of other elected organs. However, the pandemic has also shone a light on the key roles played by unelected independent institutions and international bodies, from public health actors to courts to international organizations and beyond. Constitutional INSIGHTS No. 8 explores the types of independent institutions that have shaped state action to suppress the virus, focusing on four principal functions: sources of expertise; implementation mechanisms; constraints on government action; and linkage actors mediating between the domestic, transnational and international spheres.


Publication date
15 September 2021
Tom Gerald Daly
Number of pages
Constitution Transformation Network
978-91-7671-464-5 (PDF)



1. What kind of unelected institutions have been active in pandemic responses?

2. What do we expect from independent and international institutions?

3. What does independence mean, and how does it relate to effectiveness?

4. What role did experts play in the pandemic, and within what organizational/structural framework?

5. What role did courts play in responding to the emergency? Were courts inhibited/precluded from review by the facts of the emergency?

6. What role did international institutions play in responding to the emergency?

7. What insights for the future can be drawn from these experiences?


Give us feedback

Do you have a question or feedback about this publication? Leave us your feedback, and we’ll get back to you

Send feedback

Beyond Representation in Pandemic Responses: Independent and International Institutions

Constitutional INSIGHTS No. 8
Total views 2519
Downloads 3
Close tooltip