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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Show Me—& UIUC—the Money!

From the Vice Chancellor for Research and Innovation

Congress passed a massive infrastructure package last week that includes provisions that have implications for our state and campus. At the DOE, a $73B infusion includes funding for several energy infrastructure and clean energy demonstration projects, as well as four clean hydrogen hubs. Transportation-related topics are front and center in the new bill, and Congress has directed additional funds to University Transportation Centers while establishing a new Rail R&D Center of Excellence and multiple Transportation Resilience and Adaptation Centers of Excellence. The legislation also provides $157M for cybersecurity research. The APLU and the AIP have both published additional analysis of the bill. 

Closer to home, the OTM is opening a new round of funding through the Illinois Proof of Concept (IPOC) program. IPOC bridges the funding gap between the government-supported innovations that result from UIUC research and private sector translation of those innovations into products and services. Since 2009, a $1.7M investment in campus proof-of-concept funding has supported 36 projects and 15 start-up companies, leading to an impressive $300M+ in venture, angel, and government funding. Importantly, the OTM is seeking proposals that represent the breadth of campus research excellence and have the potential for positive societal impact, regardless of discipline.

As RFPs for these and other projects are released, we'll be sure to let you know about them. If you aren't already signed up for our weekly "Funding and Opportunities" email, subscribe now to stay in the loop! 



Featured Stories

ACES Hosts Indonesian Delegation for Future Collaborations

A delegation of Indonesian officials recently visited campus to discuss future student exchanges and potential faculty research partnerships in ACES.

Spring 2022 NIH Grant Writing Series Applications Open

Applications are now open for IHSI's NIH Grant Writing Series. The program is geared to junior faculty and includes six lectures, a peer-review workshop, and one-on-one mentoring.

An NIH- and NSF-Supported Project Illuminates How Antibiotics Penetrate Gram-Negative Bacteria

An NIH- and NSF-supported project has illuminated how antibiotics penetrate Gram-negative bacteria, an important advance in combating antibiotic resistance. Emad Tajkhorshid led the research team. 

Around Campus

UIUC Launches Search for the Executive Director of the Prairie Research Institute

The campus has launched a search for the Executive Director of the Prairie Research Institute. PRI applies expertise in archaeology, ecology and biodiversity, geology, sustainable energy, waste reduction, water, and weather and climate to tackle scientific challenges and deliver positive impact to the people, economy, and environment of Illinois, and beyond.

Developing a Statewide Plan to Stop Violence and Promote Safety

Rachel Garthe recently completed a study to compile and assess violence data throughout Illinois and develop a statewide plan to stop the violence and promote safety; support children, youth, and families; advance equity; support health; and promote collaboration across state, municipal, and community-based agencies.

Why a Past Attempt to Ban Toni Morrison's Beloved From Curriculums Is Now a Political Issue

Emily Knox, author of “Book Banning in 21st-Century America,” recently provided perspective on why a past attempt to ban Toni Morrison's Beloved from curriculums is now a political issue.

Using Readily Available Materials to "End Size Limitations in Quantum Computing and Devices

project that uses readily available materials to "end size limitations in quantum computing and devices" was featured in the NSF Research News blog last week. Guarav Bahl leads the project team. 

Sponsored Programs Administration Closed for Thanksgiving Break

Sponsored Programs Administration will be closed for the Thanksgiving break on November 25th and 26th. All proposals due between November 22nd and November 28th should be submitted to SPA no later than 5:00 p.m. on November 17th.

OVCDEI Issues RFP for 2022-23 Call to Action to Address Racism and Social Injustice Research Program

The OVCDEI has issued a request for proposals for the 2022-23 Call to Action to Address Racism and Social Injustice Research Program. Attend an information session on Wednesday to review the RFP in detail. The 2021-22 program funded …

National Landscape

AAAS Releases State of the Humanities 2021: Workforce & Beyond 

The American Academy of Arts and Sciences released the State of the Humanities 2021: Workforce & Beyond last week. The publication provides "researchers and policymakers with better tools to answer basic questions about areas of concern in the field."

APLU Hosting Webinar in Celebration of Native American Heritage Month

The APLU is hosting a webinar in celebration of Native American Heritage Month. Centering Indigenous Voices Across North America will examine how public universities support Indigenous students and how they can learn from one another.

NEA Published Summary Report from a Field Scan of Disability

The NEA recently published a summary report from a field scan of disability as it relates to both public space and the human body and mind. The goal is to better understand disability design and identify related programs and scholars.

National Academies Publishes Pathways to Discovery in Astronomy and Astrophysics for the 2020s

The National Academies has published a decadal survey, Pathways to Discovery in Astronomy and Astrophysics for the 2020s, the seventh in its history. The survey identifies the most compelling challenges and frontiers in the field. 

NIH Rescindes Notice Aimed at Encouraging Grant Proposals from Minority Scientists

The NIH has rescinded a notice aimed at encouraging grant proposals from minority scientists, saying it was unclear, according to an article in Science. Some scholars argue that the notice was a way to "help bridge a funding success gap between Black and white scientists."

Study Explores How Research Funding Agencies Have Treated Scientists With Novel Ideas

An article in Science last week discussed a study of how research funding agencies have treated scientists with novel ideas, finding that at least one funder (the Swiss National Science Foundation) wasn’t "wild about researchers with records of pursuing out-of-the-box ideas."