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From the Desk: The future of research at IU Indianapolis

Since joining Indiana University this spring, I have enjoyed meeting so many faculty, staff and students in Indianapolis who are pursuing impactful research and engaging with Hoosier communities in order to make our city and state the best it can be. I’ve seen your pride in this campus and your excitement for its future, and I’m thrilled to have joined the Jaguar community at such a critical time in its history.

Phaedra Corso portrait. Phaedra Corso. Photo by Liz Kaye, Indiana UniversityJust this week, IU announced the launch of two interdisciplinary research institutes here in Indianapolis that will be part of the SciTech Corridor. Operating at the intersection of medicine, health, life sciences and technology, the institutes will transform the health and well-being of Hoosier communities, while increasing competitiveness in key industries across the city.

The Convergent Bioscience and Technology Institute will be at the forefront of IU Indianapolis’ bioscience and technology research and development, building on strong partnerships between the IU School of Medicine and several leading life science schools at IU. By translating research and creative activity through the disclosure and licensing of inventions, discoveries and innovations, and key industry partnerships, we will boost economic development in Indianapolis and make a real impact in Hoosier lives. We are poised to make discoveries in areas that quickly translate to the public, including wearable and implantable medical devices and sensors, medical imaging, the detection of biomarkers and more.

In the Institute for Human Health and Wellbeing, researchers will take a community-based approach in transforming the health and well-being of Hoosier communities. From the individual level to a global scale, IU Indianapolis faculty, students and thought leaders will work across disciplines to use evidence-based practices and technology to address some of the most critical challenges facing human health in our communities. We will work on projects that aim to improve health outcomes here in Indianapolis, including addressing chronic disease and increasing health equity and health care access for all.

On the student level, high-demand academic degree programs are in development to complement the institutes, helping us better equip the next generation of workers in our state. New research faculty will also be hired to support the activities of each institute.

IU Indianapolis will use a $60 million investment from the Indiana General Assembly to renovate existing space and develop a multipurpose laboratory that will foster interdisciplinary research and house each institute.

Additionally, we will launch three new consortia that will bring together interdisciplinary groups of researchers to tackle high-impact research in specific areas: artificial intelligence, informatics and community-engaged research that is focused on health equity. The consortia will bring together IU Indianapolis’ collective expertise in these disciplines, helping us make the greatest impacts possible. More information will be released soon about the goals of each consortia.

I’m grateful to members of the Research Accelerator Action Team who worked with me over the last several months to identify the best ways IU Indianapolis can impact our state, both at a community level and through industry partnerships. Their insight has been critical to the development of our new institutes and in driving the future direction of research here in Indianapolis.

Please reach out to the IU Research office with any questions you have. I look forward to working with IU Indianapolis faculty, staff and students as we continue to advance the goals of the IU 2030 strategic plan and propel IU Indianapolis into our state’s next-generation urban comprehensive research campus.

Phaedra Corso is associate vice president and vice chancellor for research at Indianapolis.