Office of the Director

Karen Rothenberg, J.D., M.P.A.

Karen Rothenberg
Senior Advisor to the NHGRI Director on Genomics and Society
Office of the Director


B.A. Princeton University
M.P.A. Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs, Princeton University
J.D. University of Virginia School of Law

phone (301) 318-2674
fax (301) 402-0837
e-mail karenrh@mail.nih.gov
Building 31, Room 4B09
31 CENTER DR
BETHESDA, MD 20892

Selected Publications


Karen Rothenberg, J.D., M.P.A. serves as Senior Advisor to the NHGRI Director on Genomics and Society, National Human Genome Research Institute, and as a Visiting Scholar, Department of Bioethics, Clinical Center, National Institutes of Health.  She is the Marjorie Cook Professor of Law, Founding Director, Law & Health Care Program and former Dean, University of Maryland Carey School of Law, and Visiting Professor, Johns Hopkins Berman Institute of Bioethics.

Over the last two decades Professor Rothenberg's research has focused on the ethical, legal and social implications (ELSI) of genetic testing and research, including the legislative approaches to genetic information in the health insurance and employment context, the impact of genetic research on racial and ethnic populations and women's health care and the use of genetic information in the courtroom.

In addition to her work on a variety of genetic policy issues, her current research includes studying the use of theatre as an innovative tool to identify and encourage discussion of the unique ethical, legal and social issues posed by emerging technologies in health care.  She has co-authored with Lynn Bush the book The Drama of DNA: Narrative Genomics (Oxford University Press 2014) and numerous articles in this area.

She received both a B.A., magna cum laude and Phi Beta Kappa, from Princeton University and an M.P.A. from Princeton's Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs. She earned a J.D. from the University of Virginia School of Law, Order of the Coif.

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Last Updated: October 1, 2014