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UCR Research Funding Sets Record at More Than $109 million

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  Name: Iqbal Pittalwala
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UCR Research Funding Sets Record at More Than $109 million
Increased funding strengthens support for nanoscience, training science teachers
(September 30, 2005)

RIVERSIDE, Calif. — UC Riverside researchers received $109.8 million in sponsored awards in 2004-2005, a record amount for the university that reflects its growing stature as a world-class academic research center.

Overall, sponsored awards for the campus grew by nearly 34 percent since last year. In 2003-2004, UCR received $82 million in sponsored awards, and in 2002-2003, $87.1 million.

Among the major awards received during 2004-2005 are awards, totaling more than $22 million, from the U.S. Department of Defense for nanoscience research under the direction of Robert Haddon, director of the Center for Nanoscale Science and Engineering and distinguished professor of chemistry and chemical & environmental engineering; and a nearly $11.6 million award for five years from the U.S. Department of Education to sponsor teacher training and assessment under the direction of Linda Scott-Hendrick, director of UCR Teacher Induction Programs.

“UCR has a strong tradition of research excellence, reflected this year in our passing the $100-million milestone for sponsored awards,” said Charles Louis, vice chancellor for research. “The sustained increase in our research funding is because our faculty are highly competitive for the most sought-after funding. I look forward to their continued success in this endeavor.”

This year’s funding includes awards to 390 investigators. Federal agencies provided about 72 percent of funding dollars, including $3.9 million from the U.S. Department of Agriculture, $8 million from the U.S. Department of Education, $23.6 million from the U.S. Department of Defense, $13.7 million from the National Institutes of Health, and $22.1 million from the National Science Foundation.

Among the funding recipients from colleges and disciplines across the campus are:

• Julia Bailey-Serres, professor of genetics in the Department of Botany and Plant Sciences, received nearly $500,000 of a $1.8 million award from the National Science Foundation to continue research that will eventually assign a function to every gene in a plant called arabidosis thaliana.

• Scott Coltrane, professor of sociology and associate dean of the College of Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences, received nearly $400,000 of a $1.8 million award from the National Institutes of Health to study how fathers impact the mental health and behavioral problems of their adolescent children.

• Joel Martin, interim dean of the College of Humanities, Arts and Social Sciences, received $1 million from the Gluck Foundation to continue the Gluck Fellows Program which has brought UCR faculty and students in the Departments of Art, History of Art, Creative Writing, Dance, Music, and Theatre to elementary and secondary schools, nursing homes, hospitals and those communities underserved by the arts.

• Gary Zank, professor of physics, director of UCR’s Institute of Geophysics and Planetary Physics and now director of the systemwide IGPP, received $1.7 million from the National Science Foundation to advance computational physics and lay the groundwork for a Center for Computational Sciences.

• Norman Ellstrand, professor of genetics, received a $1.5 million award from the National Science Foundation to examine the natural and human factors related to the dispersal of genes in the agricultural ecosystem; his research team includes UCR faculty and graduate students in botany and plant sciences, economics, sociology and statistics, as well as anthropologists from UC Santa Barbara.

• Yushan Yan, professor of chemical and environmental engineering, with funding from private industry is leading a research team to develop zeolite materials at the nanoscale which will revolutionize the fields of energy, environment, and microelectronics.

• Among UCR’s promising young professors who each received a prestigious CAREER Award from the National Science Foundation are Roland Kawakami, assistant professor of physics, and Stefano Lonardi, assistant professor of computer science and engineering.

• Anthony Norman, distinguished professor of biochemistry and biomedical sciences and presidential chair in biochemistry, received nearly $500,000 of a $1.5 million award from the National Institutes of Health to continue studies on Vitamin D and calcium metabolism.

• Alexander Raikhel, professor of entomology, received more than $800,000 from two awards totaling more than $3 million from the National Institutes of Health to continue his research on mosquitoes and the menacing mosquito-borne diseases.

“With the many new campus initiatives, from the Health Sciences Research Institute to the Public Policy Initiative, the new faculty UCR will be recruiting, as well as the outstanding undergraduate and graduate students the university attracts, we expect our sponsored funding to continue to grow,” said Louis, who joined UCR in July 2004.

UCR's $109.8 million received in 2004-2005 in sponsored research is a record for the university.  (Click on the image for a larger version of the graph.)

Photo Caption: UCR's $109.8 million received in 2004-2005 in sponsored research is a record for the university. (Click on the image for a larger version of the graph.)
The University of California, Riverside is a major research institution and a national center for the humanities. Key areas of research include nanotechnology, genomics, environmental studies, digital arts and sustainable growth and development. With a current undergraduate and graduate enrollment of nearly 17,000, the campus is projected to grow to 21,000 students by 2010. Located in the heart of inland Southern California, the nearly 1,200-acre, park-like campus is at the center of the region's economic development. Visit www.ucr.edu or call 951-UCR-NEWS for more information. Media sources are available at http://www.mediasources.ucr.edu/.