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Kayte Spector-Bagdady

Assistant Professor

Postdoctoral Research Fellow, Center for Bioethics & Social Sciences in Medicine, University of Michigan
JD/MBioethics University of Pennsylvania
BA Middlebury College

Professor Kayte Spector-Bagdady, JD, MBioethics is an Associate Director at the Center for Bioethics and Social Sciences in Medicine and an Assistant Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology at the University of Michigan Medical School. At U-M she is also the Chair of the Research Ethics Committee, the ethicist on the Michigan Medicine Human Data and Biospecimen Release Committee, and a clinical ethicist. She teaches the Responsible Conduct of Research as well as Research Ethics and the Law, and is an Associate Editor of the American Journal of Bioethics.

A lawyer and bioethicist by training, the overarching goal of Professor Spector’s work is improving the governance of secondary research with health data and specimens to increase the accessibility of data and generalizability of advances across diverse communities. To that end, she is the PI of a current National Human Genome Research Institute K01 studying how and why geneticists select datasets for their research and a National Center for Advancing Translational Sciences R01 on hospitals sharing patient data with commercial entities. She has been PI or Co-I on over $60M in funding.

Her recent articles have been published in The New England Journal of Medicine, Science, JAMA, Health Affairs, and Nature Medicine, among others, and her research or expertise has appeared in the NY Times, The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal, TIME, and CNN.

Professor Spector was an Associate Director for President Obama’s Presidential Commission for the Study of Bioethical Issues. During that time she was a staff lead author on reports spanning the unethical STD experiments in Guatemala in the 1940s, emerging genetic and data technologies, and clinical trial design during the 2013 Ebola outbreak. She is a former Board Member of the American Society for Bioethics & Humanities.

Professor Spector received her JD and MBioethics from the University of Pennsylvania Law School and School of Medicine after graduating from Middlebury College. She completed a research fellowship in bioethics at Michigan Medicine and is a former practicing drug and device attorney.



University Affiliation(s)


Research Area(s)

Data science / Analytics / AI | Genetics / Genomics / other OMICS | Health disparities | Health services research | Public policy and social science | Sensors and Wearables


  • Principal investigator of: Data compartmentalization, de-siloing for precision health, and collateral damage: modeling cohesive data stewardship
  • Co-investigator of: Michigan Institute for Clinical and Health Research (MICHR)
  • Co-investigator of: Building Research Infrastructure and Data Generation Engine to enable Automated AI on Standardized Ontology and Big Data Repositories (Bridge2AI-SOAR)
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