Dr. Irene Xagoraraki is a Professor of Environmental Engineering at Michigan State University. She and her students have been studying the fate of pathogens in the built environment and in natural systems. Since 2017, her research focuses on environmental surveillance approaches for prediction of viral outbreaks. She has authored multiple peer-reviewed scientific journal publications and book and encyclopedia chapters. Her research has been covered by news organization such as the New York Times, BBC and others. In 2020 her wastewater surveillance work for early detection of viral outbreaks was featured in Women in Engineering and Science: Investigations by Prominent Female Engineers, Springer Nature, Switzerland. In 2022 she was featured in the Smithsonian: Stories of Women in STEM: Biotechnology. For her research related to viruses in environmental systems and prediction of outbreaks she received awards by the US Environmental Protection Agency (2018) and by the American Society of Civil Engineers (2021 and 2022). In 2023 she received the William J. Beal Outstanding Faculty Award at Michigan State University.