This Week in Illinois Research

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“This Week in Illinois Research” is a weekly communication for the campus research community, from the Vice Chancellor for Research & Innovation Susan Martinis. 

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Beckman's Bright Future

From the Vice Chancellor for Research and Innovation

I hope you caught the great News-Gazette article last week about Nadya Mason, the soon-to-become leader of the Beckman Institute. When Jeff Moore told me that he would be stepping down after five transformational years as Beckman Director, I had several conversations with members of the Illinois research community about the qualities that the next director should have. We were looking for an exceptional scholar, a visionary leader, and an advocate for creating opportunities for different perspectives in STEM.

We found that—and more! 

As Nadya stated in the article, "To be the best community we can be, we need to have new ideas, new people coming in. We need to have people who look different, act different and think different." Since its inception more than 35 years ago, the Institute has set the high mark for boundary-breaking, interdisciplinary research. I know that will continue with Nadya at the helm!



Featured Stories

Huimin Zhao Named Editor-in-Chief of ACS Synthetic Biology

Congratulations to Huimin Zhao, who has been named  Editor-in-Chief of 

The Odyssey Project Partners with an English Professor to Deliver the Power of Words

Ángel García recently taught a new pilot course in the Odyssey Project, called "Writing

CCIL Scientists Improve BRAF Inhibitor for Better Blood Brain Barrier Penetration

Timothy Fan and Paul Hergenrother are leading research efforts to make metastatic brain melanoma cancer treatments more effective at 

Around Campus

Center for Social and Behavioral Science Launches New Website

The Center for Social and Behavioral Science has launched a new website. It features redesigned, reorganized, and enhanced access to information about CSBS activities, such as the Small Grants program, the Science and Society initiative, research support services, and more.

Stan, Judy Ikenberry Make Significant Gift Toward Beckman Café Renovation

Stan and Judy Ikenberry, the former president and first lady of the University of Illinois and longtime supporters of the Beckman Institute, recently made a significant financial contribution toward the upcoming Beckman Café renovation.

Save the Date for the 9th Annual Health Care Engineering Systems Symposium

Save the date! September 30 is the 9th annual Health Care Engineering Systems Symposium. The event will feature the latest research updates, demos of new technology, and information about Jump ARCHES funding. 

Nominate a Mid-Career Professional for the Emerging Women Leaders Forum

Nominate a mid-career professional for the  Emerging Women Leaders Forum, an initiative that provides leadership development seminars for women at Illinois who aspire to become organizational leaders. Nominations are due Monday; contact Medra Roberts-Southerland with…

Save the Date for the Upcoming Workshop on Data, Learning, and Markets on October 10-12

Save the date for the Digital Transformation Institute's upcoming Workshop on Data, Learning, and Markets on October 10-12. The workshop will explore the interplay between data science, machine learning, game theory, and economics. Program details and registration information are forthcoming.

Apply Now for NEH's Summer Stipend Program

Apply now for NEH's Summer Stipend Program for summer 2023. The program stimulates new research in the humanities and its publication. This call is a limited submission, and the internal deadline is August 19.

National Landscape

NSF Grant Decisions Reflect Systemic Racism, Study Argues

An independent analysis of more than two decades of NSF data on its merit review process shows evidence of systemic racism in grant decisions. The study's authors found that white scientists are consistently awarded more grants than researchers from other racial and ethnic groups. 

OSTP Director Nominee Arati Prabhakar Clears Committee Hurdle

Arati Prabhakar’s nomination to lead the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy has advanced to the Senate floor after a recent vote by the Commerce, Science, and Transportation Committee.

U.S. Senate Calls for Hefty Research Spending in 2023

The U.S. Senate's spending panel released its proposed 2023 budgets for federal agencies. With an overall allocation of $1.7T, the proposed spending plan would boost the budgets of most federal funding agencies.

What a Big New U.S. Law that Reshapes Science Agencies Could Mean for Researchers

President Biden is expected to sign the CHIPS and Science Act this week. The legislation authorizes a five-year, $280B investment to "keep the United States ahead of China in a global competition for technological preeminence."

U.S. Innovation Bill Clears Major Senate Hurdle with Research Provisions Intact

The U.S. Innovation and Competition Act, a massive bill that would bolster U.S. research and innovation, is one step closer to becoming law after a bipartisan group of senators stopped an attempt to strip away most of its research components. The legislation would increase both geographic diversity in grants and the flow of federal dollars to scientists.

Prospects Brighten for Endangered U.S. Small Business Research Program

Despite political opposition, key legislators are working to extend the U.S. government's Small Business Innovation Research program, a long-running, multiagency source of funding for academic and industry scientists seeking to commercialize discoveries. The group has until September 30th to reach a deal.