Along with her duties as Assistant Professor in the Sam Nunn School of International Affairs at Georgia Institute of Technology, Dr. Margaret E. Kosal is currently the Associate Director of the Sam Nunn Security Program. Her research explores the relationships among technology, strategy, and governance. She is the author of Nanotechnology for Chemical and Biological Defense (Springer Academic Publishers, 2009), which explores scenarios and strategies regarding the benefits and potential proliferation threats of nanotechnology and other emerging sciences for national security.
Formally trained as an experimental scientist, Kosal earned a doctoral degree in Chemistry from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC) working on biomimetic and nano-structured materials. She is also the co-founder of a sensor company, where she led research on biological, chemical, and explosive detection and spearheaded efforts toward the real-world applications of the technology. Kosal recently returned to the Nunn School after serving as a senior advisor to the Chief of Staff of the US Army as part of his inaugural Strategic Studies Group (SSG). She also previously served as Science and Technology Advisor within the Office of the Secretary of Defense (OSD). Kosal was the first liaison to the Biological and Chemical Defense Directorate at the Defense Threat Reduction Agency (DTRA). She has been recognized for her leadership across the U.S. federal government, specifically for efforts to coordinate across the DoD as part of the interagency Nonproliferation and Arms Control Technology Working Group (NPAC TWG) and as member of the interagency federal group charged with leading the National Nanotechnology Initiative (NNI). Kosal was nominated to and led the U.S. involvement in the NATO Nanotechnology for Defense Working Group. Currently, she serves on the editorial boards of the scholarly journals Studies in Conflict and Terrorism, the Journal of Strategic Security, and the Journal of Defense Management. Her awards include the 2012 Ivan Allen Jr Legacy Award, 2010 INTAGO Faculty Award, the OSD Award for Excellence, 2007 UIUC Alumni Association Recent Alumni Award, the President’s Volunteer Service Award, American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) Defense Policy Fellow, and the Society of Porphyrins and Phthalocyanines Dissertation Research Award.