Gloved hand using pipette to drop blood sample onto petri dish with viles of biohazardous material in the background.

The highly competitive fellowship scheme, which has been running for more than ten years, aims to inspire and connect the next generation of biosecurity leaders and innovators. Over the last decade, fellowships have been awarded all over the world. Dr Wheeler is the first researcher from University of Birmingham to land this opportunity.

Dr Wheeler’s work focuses on the development of computational screening tools for identifying DNA from emerging biological threats, establishing genomic pathogen surveillance in resource-limited settings, as well as the ethical development of artificial intelligence for health applications.

Recently, Dr Wheeler co-authored a report with the Nuclear Threat Initiative calling on governments to take urgent steps to manage the threat of artificial intelligence developed ‘global biological catastrophe’.

I’m delighted to have been named one of this year’s Emerging Leaders in Biosecurity Initiative Fellows. This fellowship is not just an acknowledgment of my work but a significant opportunity to expand my expertise, collaborate with like-minded individuals, and forge connections with allies dedicated to fortifying global biosecurity. I am excited about the possibilities this fellowship brings and look forward to contributing meaningfully to the field.

Dr Nicole Wheeler, Research Fellow at the Institute of Microbiology and Infection and the School of Computer Science at the University of Birmingham.

The programme will include learning about biosecurity history, policy, and practice, identifying career development opportunities in the biosecurity field, networking with senior biosecurity leaders, connecting with other talented professionals working on important biosecurity initiative and will offer access to resources focused on the most current, relevant topics in biosecurity.