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Faculty Research News

USC Dornsife scientists lead efforts to protect marine life during climate change by combining marine and evolutionary biology in an emerging field that requires new scientific models. Photo © Kristian Taylor 2013.

Battling Oceanic Climate Change

February 15, 2013

Changes to the temperature and chemistry of Earth's atmosphere are causing fundamental changes to the ocean, too. The water is getting warmer and more acidic, and those changes may reconfigure the microbial communities that…

Imagine if you never felt cold. USC Dornsife's David McKemy made that happen in lab models, eliminating the nerve cells responsible for chilly sensations while keeping the ability to feel heat and touch. Ultimately, their findings might lead to ways to control pain without numbing all sensations. Photo by Alexandra Bissonnette.

Chilling Discovery

February 14, 2013

USC Dornsife neuroscientists have isolated chills at a cellular level, identifying the sensory network of neurons in the skin that relays the sensation of cold. David McKemy, associate professor of neurobiology in USC…

This woman in her early 20s was trafficked into a blue jean sweatshop in Thailand, where she and others were locked in and made to work 20 hours a day, sleeping on the floor, with little to eat and no pay. She managed to escape and was brought to the government-run Baan Kredtrakarn shelter in Bangkok. After telling her story to the director, the police were informed and they raided the sweatshop, freeing 38 young women, ages 14 to 26. Photo by Kay Chernush for the U.S. State Department.

Prosecution to Empowerment

February 6, 2013

Emblematic of the shallow level of dialogue taking place concerning human trafficking is the “celebritization” of the global crisis, panelists said during a recent international conference organized by USC…

Patrick James, the first dean’s professor under Steve Kay’s leadership, delivers the inaugural Dean’s Special Lecture to a packed audience at the University Club. Photo by Erica Christianson.

The ‘Gandalf of International Relations’

February 4, 2013

Patrick James, the first Dean’s Professor of International Relations, delivered the inaugural Dean’s Special Lecture on democracy, territorial issues and international conflict to a packed audience of faculty and…

USC Dornsife's Solomon Golomb listens to a message from President Obama during a White House ceremony Feb. 1 in which Golomb was awarded the National Medal of Science. His medal awaits him on the right. Photo by Ryan K. Morris/National Science & Technology Medals Foundation.

President Obama Awards Two USC Dornsife Pioneers

February 1, 2013

One of USC’s most decorated faculty members has received the highest honor bestowed by the United States for scientific innovation. President Barack Obama presented Solomon Golomb, University and Distinguished Professor…

USC Dornsife assistant professor Sarah Feakins served as lead author of a study that recently appeared online in <em>Geology</em>. The study provides insights about the development of hominins and the landscape that herbivores (horses, hippos and antelopes) grazed many million years ago. Photo by Dietmar Quistorf.

Bipedaling Toward Truth

January 31, 2013

What came first: the bipedal human ancestor or the grassland encroaching on the forest? A new analysis of vegetation change in the cradle of humanity over the past 12 million years is challenging long-held beliefs about the…

Kate Flint, Provost Professor of English and Art History and chair of art history in USC Dornsife, arrived in 2011 from Rutgers, The State University of New Jersey. An expert on the art and culture of the Victorian era and the early 20th century, she has also taught at Bristol and Oxford universities. Photo by Dietmar Quistorf.

In Like Flint

January 30, 2013

Growing up in the United Kingdom, Kate Flint became fascinated with all things Victorian from an early age. For her, the inescapable presence of the Victorian world lived on in the country’s cities, buildings,…

Image of the Maya sun god as shark man, one of his several guises found on the frieze of the Temple of the Night Sun at El Zotz, Guatemala. Photo by Edwin Román, reproduced courtesy of Proyecto Arqueologico El Zotz.

Digging for Knowledge

January 30, 2013

Evening is falling on the ancient Maya kingdom of El Zotz deep in the dense undergrowth of the Guatemalan jungle. A dark tide of bats flows out of a large cave in the nearby mountainside as the last rays of the setting sun…

USC Dornsife Professor of History and Accounting Jacob Soll (left) and Nathan Perl-Rosenthal, assistant professor of history, are approaching their research in innovative ways. Soll photo by Geraldine Bruneel, Paris. Perl-Rosenthal photo by Ben Pack.

New Stars of Yore

January 22, 2013

One of the top-20 history departments in the nation just got stronger. USC Dornsife’s Department of History has recruited MacArthur Fellow Jacob Soll from Rutgers University, who is using his innovative talents to…

Macarena Gómez-Barris studies representations of politics and culture in the wake of Chile's dictatorship under Gen. Augusto Pinochet through the lens of memories. Photo by John Livzey.

Shadows & Symbols

January 9, 2013

At Villa Grimaldi in Santiago, Chile, the majority of buildings that stood on the grounds between 1974 and 1977 have been demolished. There are no known photographs or historical registers that capture what transpired during…