Book Review: Biosecurity
Print Issue: May 2017
Butterworth-Heinemann; Elsevier.com; 392 pages; $99.95.
Useful as a textbook and reference resource for security managers in fields such as the food industry, public health, and emergency response, the second edition of Biosecurity and Bioterrorism: Containing and Preventing Biological Threats provides an up-to-date discussion of bioterrorism in all its manifestations and the biosecurity measures required to counter it. As part of the discussion, it also reviews specific biological agents and the diseases they cause, detection methods, and consequence management considerations when such attacks or natural outbreaks occur.
Four thematic sections break the material into manageable parts. They include a conceptual explanation of bioterrorism; categories of diseases and agents and how to recognize, avoid, isolate, and notify appropriate authorities when such cases emerge; agroterrorism; and the legal aspects of biosecurity and consequence management.
The final chapter discusses how the future of biosecurity relates to advancements in biotechnology. It describes scientific methods that might lead to the development of more deadly bioweapons and the importance of developing new strategies for prevention, preparedness, and containment.
Thanks to the author’s practitioner-based insight, readers will find this text to be highly useful. Each chapter begins with stated objectives, followed by examples, illustrations, figures, and boxed topics that help highlight and explain the chapter’s discussion. Chapters conclude with critical thinking exercises that encourage readers to formulate alternative perspectives and solutions to these issues. The author also provides discussion questions and references for additional research.
Reviewer: Dr. Joshua Sinai is principal analyst at Kiernan Group Holdings in Alexandria, Virginia, where he specializes in homeland security and counterterrorism studies. He is the author of Active Shooter: A Handbook on Prevention.