When it became known in early 2020 that Covid-19 was becoming a global pandemic, it also became clear that governmental responses to the pandemic would have significant effects on democracy and human rights. With two years of data from International IDEA’s Global Monitor of Covid-19’s Impact on Democracy and Human Rights, we can take stock of what has happened and in which areas the events align with or differ from our expectations about how a pandemic might affect these vital areas of public life.

This report examines the effects of the pandemic responses in six broad areas: (1) emergency legal responses and civil liberties, (2) freedom of movement, association, and assembly, (3) freedom of expression and media integrity, (4) privacy rights and contact tracing applications, (5) women’s rights and minority rights, and (6) vaccination and fundamental rights. In each of the sections, the report describes the global trends in each of these areas, highlights cases that illustrate both positive and negative examples, and considers what the upcoming challenges will be.


Publication date
12 April 2022
Number of pages
978-91-7671-536-9 (PDF)


Executive Summary


1. Emergency legal responses to the pandemic

2. Freedom of movement, freedom of association and assembly, and lockdowns

3. Freedom of expression and media integrity

4. Contact tracing apps

5. Women’s rights and minority rights

6. Vaccines

7. Conclusion

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Taking Stock After Two Years of Covid-19

GSoD In Focus No. 13
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