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Simpson Named New JIBS Director



Dr. Michael Simpson, Professor of Materials Sciences and Engineering, Oak Ridge National Laboratory Corporate Fellow, and Group Leader of the Nanofabrication Research Laboratory Group in the Center for Nanophase Materials Sciences (CNMS) at ORNL, has been appointed the next director of the UT-ORNL Joint Institute for Biological Sciences (JIBS). This appointment is in addition to his role at CNMS.

Simpson, an expert in stochastic processes in gene expression, nanobiosciences, and synthetic biology, is a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, and the American Institute for Medical and Biological Engineering, and is a member of the JIBS Advisory Board. His appointment begins October 20, 2014. Simpson will follow Dr. Gary Sayler as the second JIBS director. Sayler, Professor of Microbiology and Director of the Center for Environmental Biotechnology, will retire at the end of 2015.

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Funding Opportunities Roundup: October 20-24

Limited Submission Opportunity:  Scalable Nanomanufacturing (SNM) FY 2015

The National Science Foundation (NSF) announces a fifth year of a program on collaborative research and education in the area of Scalable Nanomanufacturing Proposals to this topic area should target nanomanufacturing processes with a clear commercial relevance. The program particularly seeks proposals that include fundamental research in key, well-defined areas that are compellingly identified as roadblocks to scale-up. Both of these elements should be carefully explained and justified in proposals, since both the scientific novelty and the feasibility of the methods being researched will be important evaluation factors. Since Scalable Nanomanufacturing research will involve addressing multiple scientific challenges from materials science to engineering, an inter-disciplinary approach is strongly encouraged..

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UT Smart Communities Initiative at Work in Cleveland, TN

As part of the University of Tennessee Smart Communities Initiative (SCI), associate professor of design Deborah Shmerler and her students visited with Cleveland, Tennessee community members Monday to discus a branding and marketing plan for the city.

While there, her group – as well as one focused on restoration and renovation projects – gained perspective on what people like about their city and what they hope to change. To this end, students created an online survey and Facebook page for the community’s input.

The SCI is an interdisciplinary program at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville which partners faculty and students across campus with one city, county, special district, or other municipal group each year to engage in real-world problem solving aimed at increasing the level of economic viability, environmental sustainability, and social integrity of the region.

Read more at the Cleveland Banner and

UT Faculty Member Interviews Jimmy Carter for Upcoming Book

Amber Roessner, an assistant professor of journalism and electronic media, interviewed former President Jimmy Carter last week at the Carter Center in Atlanta.

The interview was for Roessner’s second book, tentatively titledJimmy Who: Jimmy Carter and the Practice of Presidential Press and Promotion in the First Post-Watergate Election, due to be published by LSU Press in 2017.

“President Carter was so gracious to share his valuable time for an interview with me,” Roessner said. “We had the opportunity to discuss communication strategies employed during the 1976 campaign, including his successful use of cinema verite-style advertisements and radio actuality services, and subsequent media coverage.

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UT Study Finds Fish Just Wanna Have Fun

A cichlid fish strikes a bottom-weighted thermometer that would immediately right itself. It was often struck repeatedly in bouts. Photo by Ann Hawthorne

Fish just want to have fun, according to a UT study that finds even fish “play.”

The research is published in the academic journal Ethology and can be viewed at the journal’s website.

Gordon Burghardt, a professor in the departments of Psychology and Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, is known for defining “play” in a way that allows us to identify it in species not previously thought capable of play, such as wasps, reptiles and invertebrates.

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Distinguished Lecture Series: Securing NIH Funding and Team Science with Dr. Kathleen Dracup

The Office of Research & Engagement and the College of Nursing are pleased to announce a Distinguished Research Lecture Series presented by Dr. Kathleen Dracup, who will present two open lectures on Securing NIH Funding and Team Science. The lectures will be held Friday, November 14, 2014, from 8:30 a.m. – noon in Hodges Library, Room 213.

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