Kavita M. Berger is the Associate Director of the Center for Science, Technology, and Security Policy at the American Association for the Advancement of Science. Kavita’s work encompasses bioengagement in the Middle East and North Africa, biosecurity policies and programs, personnel security issues, security workforce.
Since she initially joined AAAS in 2005, Kavita has worked on complex biosecurity policy issues, such as personnel reliability and misuse of information, by actively interacting with the scientific community, facilitating open dialogue between the scientific and security communities, and providing a voice for the scientific community in timely biosecurity policy discussions. Through these projects and other activities, she and her colleagues have helped enable scientists to contribute to addressing biosecurity risks at the local, national, and international levels.
In 2012, Kavita worked with the Presidential Commission for the Study of Bioethical Issues for seven months. There, she was the staff lead on the Commission’s evaluation of the ethical issues associated with pediatric medical countermeasures research. Prior to joining AAAS in 2006, Kavita conducted her post-doctoral research at the Emory Vaccine Center. Her research was on pre-clinical research and development of HIV and smallpox vaccines. Kavita received her Ph.D. in genetics and molecular biology at Emory University. Her doctoral research was on nuclear transport of proteins and messenger RNA. She received her B.S. in molecular genetics at The Ohio State University and performed her undergraduate honors thesis on cell adhesion, which affects cancer metastasis and osteoclast development.
Kavita’s areas of expertise include biosecurity policy, vaccine and drug research and development, regulatory and ethical infrastructure for vaccine and drug development, infectious disease surveillance, preparedness, and response; ethics and risk management associated with emerging biotechnologies, the dual use dilemma, scientific cooperation, and workforce development.
- AAAS (G. Coat, J. McArdle, L. Marburger, K. Berger). Scientific Engagement in the Broader Middle East and North Africa: Lessons in Promoting a Safe and Secure Research Environment. 2013.
- AAAS (K.M. Berger) in conjunction with AAU, APLU, and FBI. Bridging Science and Security for Biological Research: A Dialogue between Universities and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. Workshop Report. 2012.
- K.M. Berger and N. Davison. Bringing Science to Security: Soft Implementation of the BTWC. 2011. Disarmament Forum.
- AAAS and JUST (G. Coat, T.A. Hennig, S. Jaradat, G.L. Epstein, K.M. Berger). International Engagement: Responsible Science for a Safe and Security Society. Workshop Report. 2011.
- K.M. Berger. The Role of Science in Bioterrorism Preparedness and Response. University of St. Thomas Law Journal. 2009; 6(3): p. 622-645.
- K.M. Berger, M.S. Frankel, J.L. Sta.Ana. Educating Scientists About Dual Use Research. Science. 2009 Nov 27; 326(5957):1193.
- K.M. Berger, A.I.Leshner. New Rules for Biosecurity. Science. 29 May 2009; 324(5931): p. 1117.
- K.M. Berger, Biodefense Workforce. Wiley Handbook of Science and Technology for Homeland Security. Edited by John G. Voeller. 2008.