Correspondence with Professor Niamh Fitzgerald: FOI release

Information request and response under the Freedom of Information (Scotland) Act 2002

Information requested

"Please provide all correspondence from Professor Niamh Fitzgerald of the University of Stirling with officials from the Population Health Directorate covering the period November 2020 to January 2021.

Please provide all correspondence from Professor Niamh Fitzgerald of the University of Sterling with the Cabinet Secretary for Health and Social Care covering the period November 2020 to January 2021."


I attach a copy of all of the information you requested. Please note that for the second request we carried out searches for "Stirling" rather than "Sterling".

An exemption under section 38(1)(b) of FOISA (personal information) applies to some of the information requested because it is personal data of a third party, i.e. names and contact details of non-senior staff or external stakeholders, and disclosing it would contravene the data protection principles in data protection legislation. This exemption is not subject to the ‘public interest test’, so we are not required to consider if the public interest in disclosing the information outweighs the public interest in applying the exemption.

The attachment to the email released is a draft of the final article that was published on 15 February 2021. The draft article is marked ‘confidential’ at the time of the email (26 November 2020) because it was going through the usual process of peer review for scientific literature prior to publication. The final published article can be accessed for free on the following link: Managing COVID-19 Transmission Risks in Bars: An Interview and Observation Study: Journal of Studies on Alcohol and Drugs: Vol 82, No 1 ( The published article contains more information about the study than the draft article.

About FOI

The Scottish Government is committed to publishing all information released in response to Freedom of Information requests. View all FOI responses at

FOI - 202100261824 - Information Released - Annex A


Please quote the FOI reference
Central Enquiry Unit
Phone: 0300 244 4000

The Scottish Government
St Andrews House
Regent Road

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