Future Opportunities for Bioengagement in the MENA Region

The American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) Center for Science, Technology, and Security Policy (CSTSP) conducted a study to help the DTRA Cooperative Biological Engagement Program identify new opportunities and approaches for bioengagement in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region based on regional consultations with scientific and health experts. AAAS held regional consultations in Morocco and Jordan in 2013 wherein regional and U.S. experts discussed gaps in bioengagement, suggested opportunities for future bioengagement and explored metrics of effectiveness and long-term impact of bioengagement efforts. These discussions were informed by a commissioned collaborative grant on regional laboratory biosafety and biosecurity and two commissioned papers on the changing weapons of mass destruction landscape in the MENA region and considerations of culture in the development of bioengagement activities. In addition, AAAS prepared a roadmap for implementing the recommendations.