Click here to learn about Academy events, publications and initiatives around COVID-19.

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Understanding COVID-19 and Global Pandemics

Understanding COVID-19 and Global Pandemics

The Academy has a long history of convening experts to address global health crises, including the AIDS epidemic, and the outbreaks of SARS, H1N1, and H5N1. Continuing in that tradition, we're mobilizing our network to share scientific information and resources focused on COVID-19. Below you can find links to our programming and resources focused on the pandemic. We'll be making regular updates to this page.

Table of Contents


Our Response to COVID-19

We are working hard to support the research community and health experts in the worldwide response to the COVID-19 crisis. Find out more about what we're doing.

Reading & Viewing

Understanding COVID-19 and Global Pandemics

Ensuring Our Food is Safe During the Pandemic

In this eBriefing, experts discuss the safety considerations and implications of a prolonged and global pandemic from both the standpoint of consumer concerns and food production.

Understanding COVID-19 and Global Pandemics

Guiding the Reopening of American Business

Leaders from four critical disciplines gathered on May 19, 2020, to discuss the key elements of a coordinated and scientifically sound road map to provide the nation’s businesses greater clarity as they transition back to business in the “new normal.” Watch the discussion here.

Understanding COVID-19 and Global Pandemics

Flattening the Curve: How Different Countries are Tackling COVID-19

International public health experts discuss the global approaches taken to combat COVID-19 and consider strategies for lifting isolation measures as infections decline.

Understanding COVID-19 and Global Pandemics

Rallying to the Fight against COVID-19

As thousands of scientists work to stop the spread of the disease caused by the novel coronavirus, we checked in with a number of former recipients of the Blavatnik Award for Young Scientists who are at the frontlines of predicting and detecting disease spread, as well as identifying effective treatments. Find out how they are helping to end this pandemic.

Understanding COVID-19 and Global Pandemics

Frequently Asked Questions About Food During the COVID-19 Pandemic​

What precautions should you take while preparing food? Does cooking kill the virus? Should you wash reusable grocery bags? Find answers to your most pressing concerns about food and the pandemic from the best experts.

Understanding COVID-19 and Global Pandemics

COVID-19: The Road Ahead

The novel coronavirus SARS-CoV-2 has infected millions of people around the globe, impacting individuals, healthcare systems, countries, and economies. How do we move forward from here? On April 22, 2020, the Academy gathered three leading experts to offer their perspective on topics ranging from transmission to testing and treatment of COVID-19. Find out what they had to say.

Understanding COVID-19 and Global Pandemics

Empowering New York’s Nurse Heroes to Handle the Worst of the Pandemic

Shortages of protective supplies and equipment have made headlines during the COVID-19 emergency. Another big problem has been a shortage of nurses trained to work with ventilators in Intensive Care Units. To help address the problem, the Academy teamed with a company in Sweden to bring an artificial-intelligence-based learning program to New York’s Mount Sinai Hospitals.

Understanding COVID-19 and Global Pandemics

How Scientists and STEM Professionals are Helping to Fight the New Coronavirus

From the very beginning of this pandemic, it's been clear that the work of STEM professionals across sectors is of enormous value. Find out how researchers, technologists, business people, educators, and students are helping communities meet the challenges presented by COVID-19.

Understanding COVID-19 and Global Pandemics

The New Coronavirus: What Science & Experience Can Tell Us

On March 12, 2020, the Academy hosted a webinar with infectious disease and biosecurity researcher, Michael Osterholm, PhD (University of Minnesota), and Julie Gerberding, MD, MPH (formerly Director of the Centers for Disease Control, now at Merck). Read about what they told us based on their experience dealing with past pandemics as well as the challenges presented by this new and highly transmissible coronavirus.


Innovation Challenges

Understanding COVID-19 and Global Pandemics

Tracking Coronavirus

The lack of syndromic surveillance for coronaviruses has exposed the global and local preparedness for pandemics making us vulnerable as well as putting extreme stress on our government, healthcare facilities, medical supply demands and economies. This innovation challenge asks participants to design a syndromic surveillance system to help us understand the current pandemic and prevent future outbreaks. This challenge is open to students 18 years of age or over pursuing undergraduate, graduate, and postdoctoral degrees. Solutions are due by June 19.

Understanding COVID-19 and Global Pandemics

Combating COVID-19

The Academy is engaging students in the global response to the new coronavirus by issuing a call to action for young people. This work-from-home Innovation Challenge fosters critical thinking and collaboration skills as students, aged 13 to 17, work together through a virtual platform to develop technologies to address the global outbreak. Solutions are due by May 6.


Teacher Resources

Understanding COVID-19 and Global Pandemics

Resources for Teachers (and Parents) in the Time of COVID-19

Adjusting to remote teaching and learning in a very short time period presents significant challenges for both educators and students. We've compiled some of our favorite teaching resources to help teachers (and parents) during this transition.

Understanding COVID-19 and Global Pandemics

STEM Resource Library for K-12 Educators

Explore our collection of free lesson plans, slide decks, and videos, focused on bringing STEM to life in the classroom. Use these materials to help your students develop the skills they'll need to thrive in the modern workplace.


Public Health Resources

Understanding COVID-19 and Global Pandemics

To find the latest public health information on COVID-19, we encourage those in our network, both locally and internationally, to visit to following websites: