Alma Castro

Alma is a Senior IRB Review Specialist for the Longwood Medical Area IRB, serving the Harvard School of Public Health, Harvard Medical School and Harvard School of Dental Medicine. She is responsible for reviewing IRB applications, providing educational training to the research community, developing guidance for investigators, testing the electronic submission system and producing data analytics & visualizations for annual reporting purposes. Alma is also part of the Harvard Catalyst – Social, Behavioral, and Educational Research (SBER) subcommittee which is comprised of IRB professionals across local university and area hospital IRBs. The Harvard Catalyst SBER subcommittee is tasked with developing educational initiatives and materials and providing opportunities for engagement with the local research community.

Prior to joining ORARC, Alma served as an IRB Analyst for the Human Research Protection Office at the University of Massachusetts Amherst and was a Qualitative Researcher at the Office of Institutional Research at South Texas College.  Alma earned a BA in Sociology from Boston College, a MA in Sociology from Texas State University San Marcos, and is a PhD Candidate in Sociology at the University of Massachusetts Amherst. Alma’s dissertation, The Ethics Gap: How differing conceptualizations of ethics can affect the scientific enterprise and federal policy governing human subjects research, examines how social science researchers and IRB professionals understand and apply research ethics and how such understandings impact the IRB review process.

To contact Alma, please email her at or call 617-432-2160.