Why Justice Is Not Enough: What Solidarity Can Tell Us about Good Data Governance

When: Monday, 25 October 2021, 18:00 CET (12:00 p.m. ET). Where: online via Zoom. The Center for Global Ethics and Politics is excited to announce the third of our colloquia in Fall 2021. The talk will be followed by a Q&A with the speaker, Barbara Prainsack


While there are exact definitions of justice, solidarity is often criticised as vague; it is seen as an overused and underdetermined concept at the same time. Some also consider it a specifically European value that has no currency in other world regions. Also in discussions on good data governance, justice has been an important guiding principle, while solidarity has played a very minor role. Part of the reason for this is that justice is associated with the realm of thought and reason. Solidarity, in contrast, is a concept grounded in action: it emerges from what people do. Because of solidarity’s strong grounding in action, however, it can address problems that justice cannot. Using solidarity as the guiding principle of data governance leads us to ask and demand different things from good data governance, making it a necessary complement to data justice. I will use the examples of genomic information, and of Covid-19 contact tracing apps, to illustrate this.

Recommended reading:

  • Prainsack B., Buyx A. 2017. Solidarity in Biomedicine and Beyond. Cambridge University Press.
  • Sangiovanni, A., 2015. Solidarity as joint action. Journal of Applied Philosophy, 32(4), pp.340-359.


Please register in advance for this meeting. After registering, you will receive a confirmation email with information about joining.

Further information:

The Center for Global Ethics and Politics is part of the Ralph Bunche Institute for International Studies at The Graduate Center, City University of New York.