Center for Health Security

The Center works to protect people’s health from the consequences of epidemics and disasters and to make communities more resilient to major challenges. The Center advance policies and practice addressing a range of challenges, including the global rise in emerging infectious diseases, a continued risk of pandemic flu, major natural disasters, and the potential for biological accidents or intentional threats. Interdisciplinary and international collaborations with other experts and policymakers improve and inform our work.

Selected Project:

  • Red Teaming Global Catastrophic Biological Risks – This project employs “red teaming” methodologies to identify and analyze new scientific advances and technologies that have the potential to be deliberately misused to create a biological weapon.

Sponsored Initiatives:

  • Outbreak Observatory – Aims to collect information on challenges and solutions associated with outbreak response and share it with the public health preparedness and response communities.
  • The Bifurcated Needle – Examines how scientific and technological innovations can strengthen health security

Mission Areas:


  • Clade X – Clade X was a pandemic-focused exercise used to illustrate high-level strategic decisions and policies that the United States and the world will need to pursue in order to diminish the consequences of a severe pandemic.
  • Atlantic Storm – Ministerial table-top exercise that used a fictitious scenario designed to mimic a summit of transatlantic leaders forced to respond to a bioterrorist attack.
  • Dark Winter – Portrayed a fictional scenario depicting a covert smallpox attack on US citizens. The scenario was set in three successive NSC meetings that take place over two weeks.

Selected Publications:


  • Emerging Leaders in Biosecurity Fellowship – This fellowship program is an opportunity for talented career professionals to deepen their expertise, expand their network, and build their leadership skills through a series of sponsored events coordinated by the Center. This fellowship boasts more than 100 alumni who represent government, defense, private industry, science, law, public health, medicine, global health, journalism, the social sciences, and academia.


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