Alexa McCray, PhD

Harvard Catalyst Profile

Alexa T. McCray is Professor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School and the Department of Medicine, Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center.  She conducts research on knowledge representation and discovery, with a special focus on the significant problems that persist in the curation, dissemination, and exchange of scientific and clinical information in biomedicine and health.

Dr. McCray is the former director of the Lister Hill National Center for Biomedical Communications, a research division of the National Library of Medicine at the National Institutes of Health. While at the NIH, she directed the design and development of a number of national information resources, including Before joining the NIH she was on the research staff of IBM’s T.J. Watson Research Center. She received the Ph.D. from Georgetown University, and for three years was on the faculty there. She conducted pre-doctoral research at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Dr. McCray joined Harvard Medical School in 2005, where she was founding co-director of the Center for Biomedical Informatics and associate director of the Francis A. Countway Library of Medicine.

Dr. McCray was elected to the National Academy of Medicine in 2001. She is chair of the National Research Council’s Board on Research Data and Information. She is a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, a fellow of the American College of Medical Informatics (ACMI), an honorary fellow of the International Medical Informatics Association, and a founding fellow of the International Academy of Health Sciences Informatics. She is a past president of ACMI and a past member of the board of both the American Medical Informatics Association and the International Medical Informatics Association. She is a former editor-in-chief of Methods of Information in Medicine, and she is a past member of the editorial board of the Journal of the American Medical Informatics Association. She chaired the 2018 National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine consensus study entitled Open Science by Design: Realizing a Vision for 21st Century Research.