28.05.2020 - COVID-19 Infodemic: Push and Pull factors


28 May 2020, 10:00 am – 11:00 am CET

The event was held as a virtual meeting via Zoom, live-streamed on GLOBSEC’s social media channels.

This event was the first in a series of Ideas for Resilient Democracies (follow the hashtag #ResilientDemocracy) on the driving factors behind the rapid spread of viral false stories and conspiracies related to COVID-19.

As the corona pandemic starts to retreat and countries are starting to open their economies, false stories, hoaxes, and manipulative stories related to COVID-19 are spreading like wildfire. Viral videos, claims of dark conspiracies, and promises of miraculous treatments reach the all-time high. While some hoped that the global pandemic would increase the trust in facts and science, the opposite seems to be happening right before our eyes.

  • What are the main push and pull factors driving the spread of such false theories and narratives?  
  • What are the vulnerable spots in our societies and how to close them? 
  • Is there any coordination between state and non-state actors?  
  • How should the EU and its member states protect their citizens from information viruses?
  • What impact would the infodemic have on the new EU digital services directive, if any?


Naja Bentzen, Policy Analyst, European Parliament Research Service

Naďa Kovalčíková, Program Manager, Alliance for Securing Democracy, GMF, Brussels

Peter Kreko, Director, Political Capital Institute, Budapest


Miroslava Sawiris, Research Fellow, Democracy & Resilience Programme, GLOBSEC

You can read a short brief with the output ideas of this webinar here.

You can watch the video with the full recording below.