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Faculty Research News

In celebration of International GIS Day, Sarah Ellis and Haijing Lin, both undergraduates at USC Dornsife's Spatial Studies Institute (SSI), launch a weather balloon with an infrared GoPro camera attached to demonstrate aerial mapping technology. Photo by Matt Meindl.

A Bird’s Eye View

December 4, 2013

The passing troupe of blue-uniformed grade school children on a visit to University Park campus nudged each other and pointed at the sky as, 250 feet up in the air, a large white weather balloon sailed over Alumni Park. On…

In 2013, Assistant Professor of Computational Biology Remo Rohs published 10 studies related to his research on protein-DNA recognition. Three recent articles received prestigious awards and include Rohs’ graduate students as first- and co-authors. Photo by John Livzey.

A Trio of Awards

December 4, 2013

A pathbreaking researcher, Remo Rohs is being noticed in big ways. In 2013, the assistant professor of computational biology at USC Dornsife published 10 studies related to his research on protein-DNA recognition. Now, three…

“The somatic marker idea turned out to be relevant to understand complex human behavior. I am pleased to see it recognized,” University Professor Antonio Damasio said. The medal is on the right. Damasio photo by John Livzey.

Damasio Wins Grawemeyer Award

December 4, 2013

University Professor Antonio Damasio, who proposed that emotions play an integral role in human reasoning and decision-making, has won the 2014 Grawemeyer Award for Psychology. Damasio, the David Dornsife Chair in…

<em>Achieving Nuclear Ambitions: Scientists, Politicians and Proliferation</em> by Jacques Hymans of USC Dornsife has won a third major award: the 2014 Grawemeyer Award for Ideas Improving World Order.

Improving World Order

December 4, 2013

A book about nuclear proliferation by Jacques Hymans, associate professor of international relations at USC Dornsife, has won the 2014 Grawemeyer Award for Ideas Improving World Order. A $100,000 prize is attached to the…

The newest fossil had a broad forehead similar to snow leopards and its front teeth were heavily worn. It was small for a big cat — probably about the size of a clouded leopard, a cat found in the rainforests of Southeast Asia that can grow to 50 pounds. Illustration by Mauricio Antón.

Research With a Roar

December 3, 2013

The oldest big cat fossil ever found — which fills in a significant gap in the fossil record — has been unearthed on a paleontological dig in Tibet, scientists announced. A skull from the new species, named…

On the University Park campus, from left, USC Dornsife Dean Steve Kay, Linda and Harlan Martens, and the Linda and Harlan Martens Endowed Director’s Chair for the USC-Huntington Early Modern Studies Institute, Peter Mancall. The endowed chairship was made possible through a $1 million donation by the Martens. Photo by Steve Cohn.

Securing the Future

November 27, 2013

Growing up in Pasadena, Calif., Harlan Martens’ family would bring out-of-town visitors to the magnificent Huntington Library. His wife Linda, originally of Fullerton, Calif., also remembers visiting the library as a…

With a $1.5 million grant from the Mathers Foundation, University Professor Antonio Damasio of USC Dornsife is leading a study to understand how the axon insulator myelin affects the ability to process feelings in the brain. Photo by Philip Channing.

More Than a Feeling

November 25, 2013

The Brain and Creativity Institute (BCI) based at USC Dornsife has received a $1.5 million grant from the Mathers Foundation to investigate the neurobiology of feelings at the cellular level.  One of the fundamental…

Professor of Earth Sciences Thorsten Becker has been awarded a 2013 Friedrich Wilhelm Bessel Research Award. He will use the award to continue his research on the dynamics of earthquake faults in Potsdam, Germany. Photo by Michelle Boston.

Finding Fault

November 20, 2013

Thorsten Becker, professor of earth sciences, has won a 2013 Friedrich Wilhelm Bessel Research Award, granted by the Alexander von Humboldt Foundation. The award will support his continued research in Potsdam, Germany, on the…

Named a 2013 “Rising Star” by the Association of Psychological Science, Darby Saxbe, assistant professor of psychology at USC Dornsife, measures fluctuations in cortisol levels and uses neuroimaging to study how relationships with family and close friends affect health and well-being. Photo by Susan Bell.

Under the Skin

November 20, 2013

It’s difficult to forget the harrowing images of emaciated, hollow-eyed Romanian orphans whose plight was revealed after the fall of Communist leader Nicolae Ceausescu’s brutal regime in 1989. “When children…

University Professor Antonio Damasio of USC Dornsife led a panel on the brain and creativity before scientists from throughout the world. Here, he is seen in his office at the USC Brain and Creativity Institute, housed in USC Dornsife. Photo by Philip Channing.

The Creativity Machine

November 18, 2013

Antonio Damasio, University Professor, David Dornsife Chair in Neuroscience and professor of psychology and neurology at USC Dornsife, spoke about the neuroscience of creativity during a recent conference held in San Diego…