NC JOLT’s annual symposia focus on cutting-edge legal issues in a wide array of technology-related topics. These symposia are open to UNC students and staff, NCBA members seeking CLE credit, and members of the public.

The 2022 Symposium

Vaccine Laws, Politics, and Policies: How Did We Get Here and Where Should We Go?

The North Carolina Journal of Law and Technology Vol. 23 Symposium will be held on Friday, January 28, 2022. The Symposium was hosted in a virtual webinar format that allowed people from all over the world to connect over Zoom. Check back soon for updates on speakers and registration!


  • John Conley and Arlene Davis
    • Article Title: Can Bioethics Guide Governance? Lessons from the Pandemic.
    • Description
      • This article will focus on what role, if any, bioethics has to play in the making of public policy concerning the rationing of newly developed vaccines and other medical treatments when resources are limited. To answer this question, their article will focus on the rationing of care at the beginning of the pandemic and the subsequent distribution of COVID-19 vaccines.
  • Dorit Reiss
    • Description
      • This paper will look at various states’ efforts to pass bills limiting the ability of private actors, acting as employers or business owners, to require vaccines or inquire into vaccine status. The paper maps out the bills, discusses their passage and their effects, and will address any lawsuits that have come up.
  • Ana Santos Rutschman
    • Description
      • Rutschman’s paper will map the first set of legal and policy responses to vaccine hesitancy in the reception to vaccines as technology (which we tend to think of as primarily public health/informational responses) to the latest developments since the World Health Organization included vaccine hesitancy in its list of top threats to global health in 2019 (which include responses to social media-based misinformation and “enhanced” nudge mechanisms).
  • Christine Coughlin
    • Description
      • The paper starts examining the trajectory of government response after 9/11 and comparing those to responses within the covid-19 pandemic and then providing recommendations for the future.


  • Mike Cohen
    • Myron (Mike) Cohen is an infectious disease expert at UNC recognized internationally.
  • Doug MacKay
    • Doug McKay of UNC Public Policy will focus on bioethical issues.
  • Mark Hall
    • Mark Hall will discuss vaccine passports.
  • Glenn George
    • Glenn George will discuss rolling out vaccines at a large healthcare system (both to healthcare workers and patients) and also distributing vaccines to the university.
  • Benny Joyner
    • Benny Joyner will focus on vaccines and the particular issues around administering vaccines to children.
  • Erica Pettigrew
    • Medical Director of the Orange County Health Department
  • Tiffany Li