Dataveillance and Technology Usage During the COVID-19 Crisis: The case from Pakistan

The Management and Marketing Group at Essex Business School warmly invite you to join Dr Atika Kemal as she presents COVID-19 via a case in Pakistan.

  • Wed 22 Apr 20

    13:00 - 14:00

  • Online

    Zoom Meeting ID: 526727642

  • Event speaker

    Dr Atika Kemal, Lecture in Management and Marketing, Essex Business School

  • Event type

    Lectures, talks and seminars
    Management and Marketing Research Seminar

  • Event organiser

    Essex Business School

This seminar hosted by Management and Marketing group at Essex Business School aims to explore the COVID-19 pandemic in the case of Pakistan. The seminar will focus on the National Database Registration Authority (NADRA) and draw on the discourse on how health emergencies institutionalise the state and agencies to deploy dataveillance practices and mobile technologies to feed intelligence and policing measures.

Seminar abstract

As the COVID-19 pandemic remains a global health crisis, many governments are enforcing stringent measures with rapid efforts to curb the pandemic.

Mostly, studies on dataveillance (the systemic creation and/or use and sharing of personal data for the investigation or monitoring the action of one or more persons) have largely focused on the surveillance of societies using big data and digital technologies.

However, with the outbreak of this pandemic, a new form of health dataveillance has emerged.

Developments in information technologies and data analytics, combined with a voracious appetite for social control among government agencies and corporations alike, has seen dataveillance practice diversify and proliferate.

This talk will present the case of Pakistan, with a particular reference to the National Database Registration Authority (NADRA), the national person identity system that records and shares citizens biometric data for identification, tracking and monitoring purposes.

Drawing on the discourse on how health emergencies, like COVID-19, institutionalise the state and agencies to deploy dataveillance practices and mobile technologies to feed intelligence and policing measures, it may be argued whether the data justice debate and other ethical concerns should become meaningless in crisis situations.


This online seminar is free to attend and there is no need to book in advance.

Speaker bio

Dr Atika Kemal is a Lecturer in Management and Marketing at Essex Business School.

Her research interests focus on the emerging themes of digital technology innovation, intersecting across the domains of organisations and management, development economics, and new business models in the platform economy. 

Mainly, her work revolves around the socio-organisational, economic and political aspects of the ICT artefact - delineating into areas of institutional change, e-governance and the inclusive development of marginalised communities, particularly in developing economies.

Atika's research on digital financial innovation for financial and social inclusion in Pakistan has been instrumental in impacting policy and practice changes in the largest government social cash programme in Pakistan.

Her study received attention from policy makers and development practitioners in the country.

Currently, her research examines the discourses around dataveillance linked with the datification of societies, in the context of the socio-political and ethical issues related to the digital and data economy.

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