Title: Preeminent Professor
College/Institute: Plant Pathology Department (IFAS), Institute for Sustainable Food Systems, Emerging Pathogens Institute
Research interests: Epidemiology, Systems Analysis, Food Security, Research for Development
Curriculum vitae: PDF
Hobbies: Playing the fiddle and accordion

Karen A. Garrett, Ph.D., is a Preeminent Professor at the University of Florida, where she works within the plant pathology department, Institute for Sustainable Food Systems, and Emerging Pathogens Institute. Garrett’s work uses systems analysis to support food security and conservation, and it often includes a focus on plant disease management strategies.

Her recent work includes the analysis of strengths and vulnerabilities of networks for: a.) the smart surveillance and mitigation of biological invasions,  b.) the deployment of resistance genes through crop breeding networks, c.) distribution of healthy seeds in low-income countries, and d.) the potential spread of mycotoxins and invasive pests through the movement of stored grain to new places. Garrett is advancing a platform, impact network analysis, which is used to evaluate the degree of effectiveness of new management technologies through linked socioeconomic and biophysical networks.

Garrett’s work spans the Americas, Africa and Asia. Her global portfolio of collaborative projects spans Cambodia, Colombia, Ecuador, Kenya, Laos, Mexico, Nigeria, Peru, Tanzania, Uganda, and Vietnam. Three of her projects at UF were covered in the following articles: Wilting Away, about laurel wilt disease; Global Crop Surveillance System, Bulwark Against Disease, about a proposal for a global surveillance system to protect food crops; and Eggplant’s Newest Pathogenic Fungus, about a novel incidence of fruit rot in Haitian eggplants.

Prior to joining UF, Garrett was a faculty member for 15 years in the department of plant pathology at Kansas State University.

More information about research in her lab is available at www.garrettlab.com, where announcements for working with the lab and advisement are also posted.​

Contact information:
Plant Pathology Department
University of Florida
PO BOX 110680
Gainesville, FL 32611-0680