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Faculty Research News

USC Dornsife’s Sonya Lee, an expert on ancient cave temples and researcher in the emerging field of eco-art history, has been awarded a three-year Mellon New Directions Fellowship to pursue specialized heritage conservation training.

Finding Light in a Cave

April 8, 2014

Sonya Lee became interested in cave temples in China when she was a teenager and has studied them extensively. Lee analyzes the architecture and artifacts found at these sites, many of which are more than a thousand years…

Humanities professors Joseph Boone, Macarena Gómez-Barris, María-Elena Martínez and James McHugh were awarded fellowships for work in the areas of Melville's literature, enlightenment thoughts on race and sex, the effects of eco-tourism in Ecuador and the history of alcohol in India. Illustration by Letty Avila.

From Melville to Medieval India

April 3, 2014

Four USC Dornsife professors have been selected for yearlong research or writing fellowships that will take them as far as India and Italy. Their research topics won over hundreds or, in some cases, thousands of applications…

Mark Thompson, professor of chemistry at USC Dornsife, and a pioneer in researching organic LEDs and organic solar cells, has received the Richard C. Tolman Medal for his outstanding contributions to chemistry. Photo by Max Gerber.

Color Him Smart

April 1, 2014

Chemist Mark Thompson’s innovative research into color technology has resulted in the development of energy efficient displays for smartphones. Thompson’s work in organic LEDs and organic solar cells has earned…

Key members of the new Chickpea Innovation Lab: USC Dornsife's Sergey Nuzhdin (center), professor of biological sciences Doug Cook (left), professor of plant pathology at UC Davis and director of the USAID research project, and Eric von Wettberg, assistant professor in ecology and evolutionary biology at Florida International University. Photo by Susan Bell.

The Small But Mighty Chickpea

March 28, 2014

Bumping along the dirt roads of rural southeastern Turkey in a battered Jeep, Sergey Nuzhdin and his team of collaborators got an occasional glimpse of the plumes of smoke rising across the border in war-torn Syria. Their…

Mary Helen Immordino-Yang receives the Early Career Award, established to honor an individual no later than 10 years after receipt of a doctoral degree. Photo by Dietmar Quistorf.

Early Career Award

March 27, 2014

USC Dornsife’s Mary Helen Immordino-Yang has been awarded the Early Career Award for 2014 by the American Educational Research Association (AERA). The international organization will confer the award for excellence in…

Meghan Miller’s research looked at the ancient geologic record of Eastern Australia, but it is applicable to the Pacific Northwest in the United States, the Mediterranean and southeast Asia. Photo by John Livzey.

Solving a Geologic Riddle

March 26, 2014

USC Dornsife scientist Meghan Miller is among an international team of researchers who used computer modeling to reveal, for the first time, how giant swirls form during the collision of tectonic plates, with subduction zones…

Researcher Josh West treks through a valley in Peru in search of evidence of chemical weathering of rocks as they erode. Photo by Mark Torres.

The Biggest Natural Recycler

March 21, 2014

Researchers from USC and Nanjing University in China have documented evidence suggesting that part of the reason that the Earth has become neither sweltering like Venus nor frigid like Mars lies with a built-in atmospheric…

Anna Krylov, professor of chemistry at USC Dornsife, is spearheading an effort to end gender discrimination at scientific conferences. Photo courtesy of Anna Krylov.

Petitioning Against Discrimination

March 21, 2014

When Anna Krylov saw the initial program for a leading international conference in quantum chemistry to take place next year in Beijing, China, she sighed. She was disappointed, but not surprised. The list of 24 invited…

“Wild or Farmed? How to Sustain the Options for Your Dinner Table” was the title of a March 10 discussion in Newport Beach, Calif., highlighting the ways USC Wrigley Institute researchers are investigating the opportunities and challenges of aquaculture.

Wild or Farmed?

March 19, 2014

Since the 1980s, the Earth’s population has ballooned to 7 billion — a nearly 2 billion increase over three decades. Meanwhile, seafood consumption has remained constant with demand outpacing the amount of wild…

From left to right: USC Dornsife Dean Steve Kay, Provost Elizabeth Garrett, President and CEO of the Catalina Island Conservancy Ann Muscat (Ph.D., biological sciences, '83), Trojan League of Los Angeles (TLLA) Annual Benefit Co-chair Diane Bleak, TLLA President Mary Rooney and Executive Vice Provost Michael Quick. Photos by Bruce Menke.

Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow

March 18, 2014

“For alumni, the College is a place that we hold dear in our hearts for many reasons,” said Mary Rooney, president of the Trojan League of Los Angeles (TLLA). “I will always smile when I look back on my…