BioSecurity and Pandemic Resilience

BioSecurity and Pandemic Resilience
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Overview of the most pressing biosecurity issues facing the world today, with a special focus on the COVID-19 pandemic. Critical examination of ways of enhancing biosecurity and pandemic resilience to the current and future pandemics. Examination of how the US and the world is able to withstand a pandemic or a bioterrorism attack, how the medical/healthcare field, government, and technology sectors are involved in biosecurity and pandemic or bioterrorism preparedness and response and how they interface; the rise of synthetic biology with its promises and threats; global bio-surveillance; effectiveness of various containment and mitigation measures; hospital surge capacity; medical challenges; development, production, and distribution of countermeasures such as vaccines and drugs; supply chain challenges; public health and policy aspects of pandemic preparedness and response; administrative and engineering controls to enhance pandemic resilience; testing approaches and challenges; promising technologies for pandemic response and resilience, and other relevant topics.

Note: NDO Students must enroll in this course for 4 units.

Additional 1 unit for writing a research paper for 5 units total maximum.

Previous guest lecturers:

  • Condoleezza Rice - Former Secretary of State
  • Dr. Ken Bernard - Former Special Assistant on Biosecurity to Presidents Clinton and Bush Jr.
  • Dr. Alex Garza - Chief Medical Officer of the Homeland Security Department

Course Availability

The course schedule is displayed for planning purposes – courses can be modified, changed, or cancelled. Course availability will be considered finalized on the first day of open enrollment. For quarterly enrollment dates, please refer to our graduate education section.


Open to medical, graduate, and undergraduate students. No prior background in biology necessary.

Course Archived

Winter 2021-22
Stanford School of Humanities and Sciences