Aware of the risk to human development from public health emergencies, governments and international organisations have adopted regulatory measures designed to prepare for and mitigate the risk of global pandemics. However, as the development of the Australian Defence Trade Controls Act 2012 (Cth) reveals, choices in regulatory measures can have profound effects on the delivery of public health and the practice of medical research. Introducing a new regulatory regime for researchers engaged in â€œdual-useâ€ research, the Defence Trade Controls Act 2012 (Cth) (DTCA) seeks to control a variety of research and teaching activities. This article uses the DTCA as a case study of the â€œsecuritizationâ€ of infectious diseases, the mechanisms by which biosecurity rules are becoming globalised and the clash of principles that can arise for public health researchers. With the DTCA scheduled for a legislated review in 2018, an awareness of the wider constellation of international and domestic rules restricting dissemination of research findings with national security implications is imperative for public health researchers.
|Journal of law and medicine
|Published - 2018