A case brought by millionaire, Simon Dolan who said: “I believe it is absolutely crucial in holding the government to account – they have introduced entirely unprecedented restrictions on basic freedoms, caused the losses of millions of jobs, destroyed businesses, incurred eye-watering amounts of debt, which will take generations to pay back, and yet they… Read More Government faces legal action over refusal to publish scientific advisory group minutes
A quote: Government scientific advisers are furious at what they see as an attempt to censor their advice on government proposals during the Covid-19 lockdown by heavily redacting an official report before it was released to the public, the Guardian can reveal. The report was one of a series of documents published by the Scientific… Read More Guardian: UK scientists condemn ‘Stalinist’ attempt to censor Covid-19 advice
Survey results commisioned by the Open Knowledge Foundation done by Survation. Quote of their results from: https://blog.okfn.org/2020/05/05/brits-demand-openness-from-government-in-tackling-coronavirus/ The poll found: 97% believe it is important that COVID-19 data is openly available for people to check 67% believe all COVID-19 related research and data should be made open for anyone to use freely 64% are now… Read More UK public demand openness from government in tackling coronavirus
Neil Fegusson is not a politician. He does not make decisions, he has never put himself up before an electorate as a particularly upstanding person. He should be judged on the quality of his advice not his behaviour or character. Once again there has been a confusion of roles here. If Fergusson had done something… Read More Resignation of Fegusson from SAGE shows confusion about roles
BBC news reports (https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/health-52542109) reveal a number of worries the advisers had about some of the strategies (such as immunity passports). Documents are available here: https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/882726/29-pre-empting-possible-negative-behavioural-responses-covid-19-antibody-testing-13042020.pdf
Under pressure the UK government has now released the names of people in the covid19 related advisory groups (having hastily recruited some extra people). https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/scientific-advisory-group-for-emergencies-sage-coronavirus-covid-19-response-membership/list-of-participants-of-sage-and-related-sub-groups
They maintain a searchable catalogue of papers about such models (as well as archiving many of the models themselves) at https://catalog.comses.net/ The do some analysis of these, including the type of documentation and whether the code is archived: see https://catalog.comses.net/visualization/ At the moment public archival of code is increasing but still not the norm.
Following other publications (Flaminio et al. 2020) a multi-authored letter in Science calls for all Covid19 models to be openly accessible, with enough information so others can effectively inspect, try out and run these. Some quotes: “A hallmark of science is the open exchange of knowledge.” “Given the necessity for rapid response to the coronavirus… Read More Science: Call for transparency of COVID-19 models
https://www.theguardian.com/world/2020/apr/27/uk-to-name-scientific-advisers-on-emergency-coronavirus-group-sage Including the: Scientific Advisory Group for Emergencies (Sage), Scientific Pandemic Influenza Group on Modelling (Spi-M) sub-group Scientific Pandemic Influenza Group on Behaviours (Spi-B) sub-group and New and Emerging Respiratory Virus Threats Advisory Group (Nervtag) Guardian article says: Vallance said there was interest in the Sage meetings across Whitehall from early on. Many people were… Read More UK Gov to release names of those on key scientific advisory panels
An example of the difficult-to-find mistakes that can occur if others can not inspect, run and check the code of complex simulations in Physics Today: “The war over supercooled water” by Ashley G. Smart.