Calls for papers


International Journal of Risk Assessment and Management
International Journal of Risk Assessment and Management


Special Issue on: "Biosecurity Assurance in a Threatening World: Challenges, Explorations, and Breakthroughs"

Guest Editors:
Dr. Kathryn Baker and Dr. Robert T. Brigantic, Pacific Northwest National Laboratory, USA
Amy Kircher, NORAD – U.S. Northern Command, USA

To keep pace with the rapid increase in national and international biological threats, policy makers and the scientific community are accelerating biosecurity research, as well as rapidly deploying existing science to offer protection against these threats. Biosecurity is meant to encompass defending against bioterrorism, as well as improving public health against naturally emerging and evolving diseases.

Such biosecurity research spans an immense field of endeavor, including characterization of biological threats; detection of disease-causing organisms in the environment and clinical samples; forensics, attribution and epidemiological analysis of the origin of biological agents; integration of sensors, data and information, especially across heterogeneous measurement and data sources; development and deployment of physical countermeasures; and medical countermeasures.

The purpose of this special issue is to better understand biosecurity as a whole as well as many of its key aspects, and to attempt to determine what is needed to improve effective biosecurity risk management. We invite submissions of articles for consideration; manuscripts may be technical, conceptual, policy or practice oriented and can range from original research to overviews, assessments, and reviews.

Subject Coverage
Papers should align with, but are not limited to, the following topic areas:
Part I: General Biosecurity Issues
  • Biosecurity Conceptual Challenges, Ambiguities, Recommendations
    • Explore differences in definitions, applications, and priorities across countries, contexts, and sectors
    • Explore and analyse changes (past, present, future)
    • Analyse definitional implications for effective risk management (policy, strategy, operational levels)
  • Current State of Biosecurity and Biosecurity Risk Management
    • Analyses of entire spectrum of biosecurity risk areas (current and future, natural and terrorist) and consequences (human life and health, environmental/ecosystem, economic, political, psychosocial)
    • Assessment of biosecurity preparedness across levels (international, national, and local) and across stages (threat assessment and prevention, surveillance and detection, response and recovery)
    • Assessment of state of biosecurity science and its relation to biosecurity preparedness (gaps, strengths)
    • The state and adequacy of biosecurity awareness and political attention—assessment of national/international risk management priorities and strategies (what exists / what is needed)
    • Functional requirements for preparedness (prevention/mitigation, surveillance/detection, and response/recovery)
    • Assessment of overall technical, infrastructure, and process capabilities for biosecurity preparedness (strengths and weaknesses)
  • The Future of Biosecurity
    • Predicting future biosecurity threats and/or biosecurity challenges
    • Next generation biosecurity technology needs
    • Next generation biosecurity research needs
    Part II: Specific Biosecurity Topics of Interest
  • Analyses of Key Biosecurity Threats or Threat Areas
    • Specific bio-weapon threats
    • Pandemic flu or other biosecurity health threats
    • Agricultural biosecurity threats
    • Biosecurity with respect to biodiversity and the whole GM issue
  • Analyses/Assessments of Specific Biosecurity Capability Areas
    • Technology areas (bioforsensics, biodetection, predictive modelling, etc.)
    • Infrastructure area strengths and weaknesses (response, continuity of operations, restoration, etc.)
    • Strengths and weaknesses of preparedness processes

    Notes for Prospective Authors

    Submitted papers should not have been previously published nor be currently under consideration for publication elsewhere

    All papers are refereed through a peer review process. A guide for authors, sample copies and other relevant information for submitting papers are available on the Author Guidelines page

    Important Dates

    Abstracts (100 to 150 words) due by: 1 February, 2007

    Completed manuscripts due by: 1 December 2007 (Deadline extended)