ATLANTA—Georgia State University named the awardees of the first-ever Research Innovation and Scholarly Excellence (RISE) challenge. They will conduct research under four dynamic research hubs, and each group will receive one-time seed funding of up to $750,000 over the course of one year to fund their work.
The research domains are designed to foster a collaborative research ecosystem at Georgia State and leverage the strengths of its research community. Georgia State President M. Brian Blake, who took office last summer, said the initiative is part of a larger plan to double research productivity at the university over the next decade.
“I’m so proud that Georgia State stands alone as one of the most rapidly growing research universities in the nation while also being one of the most diverse university communities in the world,” Blake said. “Georgia State solves problems that transcend ethnicity, socioeconomic differences, geographical boundaries and social justice. Our RISE awardees will take bold new approaches to our most pressing societal challenges. These research teams will not only have large-scale impact within the university but also outside our walls through partnerships with government agencies, private industry, foundations, nonprofits and philanthropic sponsors.”
The research hubs bring together nearly 50 experts across different fields to encourage transformative research discoveries and harness their expansive knowledge base. The initiative is being led by Interim University Provost Nicolle Parsons-Pollard and Vice President for Research and Economic Development Tim Denning.
“We are truly fortunate to have some of the most respected researchers in the world working at our university,” said Parsons-Pollard. “This initiative allows us to support their tremendous work while capitalizing on their strengths and research synergies.”
Denning said the interdisciplinary teams of faculty have potential to develop transformative research that will have significant societal impact.
“In the past 10 years, research expenditures at Georgia State have shot up by nearly 150 percent, making us one of the fastest-growing research institutions in the nation,” he said. "This is a great opportunity to continue that upward trajectory by supporting our faculty’s interdisciplinary research and innovative thinking."
In addition to the four main hubs, the university will also fund four other promising research undertakings that will each be awarded $50,000 in seed funding.
The awardees were chosen from 38 groups who submitted detailed research proposals. Submissions were reviewed by a panel of university leaders based on criteria including impact, leverage, diversity, interconnection, engagement, sustainability and innovation.
For 25 years, Georgia State University has ranked among the top universities in the Carnegie Foundation’s elite category of R1: Highest Research Activity. This year, the university is on track to exceed last year’s research funding by more than $25 million, setting a new university record.