Randall Murch, associate director, Research Program Development, was recently appointed to the National Science Advisory Board for Biosecurity (NSABB) and to the oversight committee for Division of Earth and Life Sciences (DELS) within the National Academies.

Managed by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) for the Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS), the NSABB is charged specifically with guiding the development of:

  • A system of institutional and federal research review that allows for fulfillment of important research objectives while addressing national security concerns;
  • Guidelines for the identification and conduct of research that may require special attention and security surveillance;
  • Professional codes of conduct for scientists and laboratory workers that can be adopted by professional organizations and institutions engaged in life science research;
  • Materials and resources to educate the research community about effective biosecurity; and
  • Strategies for fostering international collaboration for the effective oversight of dual use biological research.

Murch will begin his three year NSABB term on Dec. 2.

Murch recently completed six years of service on the National Academies' Board of Life Sciences and has been a member of four study committees within that organization over the past seven years. His term on the DELS oversight committee begins Jan. 1, 2010, and will extend through Dec. 31, 2012.

DELS enlists national experts in 13 units to address issues of local and national importance where policy meets the geo-, life-, and chemical sciences. These units conduct sponsor-directed studies, workshops, and other events that address questions and issues of national and international importance. As do other divisions of the National Research Council, DELS facilitates communication among the research community, policy makers, industry and the public. Topics addressed by DELS range from the molecular (biotechnology), to national (biosecurity), to the global (climate change and its many impacts).

Murch works in the National Capital Region and is also an adjunct professor at the School of Public and International Affairs and the Center for Technology, Security, and Policy.


Share this story