Emerging and re-emerging viruses have the potential to cause high morbidity and mortality and range from localized outbreaks to epidemics. Due to their emerging nature, most aspects of the biology and infectious potential of these viruses are poorly understood. Our continuing struggle to respond to a procession of pandemics including SARS, avian influenza, MERS, Ebola and more recently Zika, highlights key gaps in our knowledge and should serve to motivate our re-thinking on how we can better prepare and deal with future unknown viral threats. This meeting will focus on important areas such as surveillance, diagnostics and countermeasures and other important advances in new technologies and how they are being applied to research. Furthermore, we will discuss how to facilitate the translation of research, data and candidate treatments through the development pipeline in a timely and cost-effective manner. The key themes to be covered include the need to understand why zoonotic diseases matter, their association with agriculture, the importance of surveillance and early detection, and the difficulties of dealing with diseases that involve both medical and veterinary communities. The conference will bring together experts in virology, immunology, vaccinology, epidemiology with those that seek to transfer knowledge between these groups, veterinarians and industry and government. Further, this meeting would bring together individuals involved in the control of these diseases in government and non-government organizations, as well as people involved in study of zoonosis and countermeasures. The creation of global networks and sharing of information will ensure that we are better prepared for future outbreaks.