CALL FOR PAPERS - Public Health Surveillance: Spying on America for Its Own Good?



Event Date: 


Location name: 

Carbondale, Illinois


Southern Illinois Law Journal

Symposium date: Friday, April 12, 2019 in Carbondale, Illinois at SIU School of Law

Call for Papers: The Southern Illinois Law Journal invites proposals from faculty and professionals to present at the upcoming annual symposium, which will focus on public health surveillance. Accepted presenters will have the opportunity to participate on an interdisciplinary panel of scholars, and to have their papers published in a special symposium issue of the journal.

Deadline for Proposals: December 20, 2018

Submission Requirements: To submit a proposal, please include your CV and contact information, as well as an abstract (up to 600 words) of the proposed presentation with title and an indication of whether or not you plan to write an article for the symposium issue. Please send your proposal to Prof. Jennifer Brobst at or you may also call (618) 453-8702 if you have any questions.

Selected presenters will be informed by the first week of January 2019. Reasonable travel costs of presenters will be covered by SIU. Articles would not be due until the summer of 2019 and should be between 10,000 and 20,000 words in Bluebook citation style.

Scope of Topic: Over the last century, the balance of interests in public health law has gradually shifted, as both the severity of risks and capacity to address those risks increase simultaneously. While public health law still focuses on the traditional police power interests of public health, safety, and welfare, the means of tackling public health challenges now includes more extensive governmental monitoring due to advances in technology, science, and medicine. Some question the detrimental impact on individual autonomy and privacy rights related to more intrusive public health surveillance, particularly at the federal level, as reliance on state and local law to protect the public health may not adequately address current concerns.

Anticipated symposium panels may focus on, for example:

I. Video Surveillance for Public Safety e.g., drone use for worksite safety, bomb detection, or drug detection over crops, facial/gait recognition software, or body camera data storage

II. Biological Surveillance for Public Health and Safety e.g., biometric and genetic data privacy and storage, neonatal blood spot storage, research access to medical waste, use of IRB data for undisclosed research

III. Informational Surveillance by Public Health Departments e.g., mandatory/emergency reporting of disease or injury, big data analytics such as Website Flu Maps or global surveillance public-private partnerships, mental health/gun registries

We hope that you will join us for this symposium at Southern Illinois University School of Law, nestled in the heartland of America near several gorgeous national and state parks.