UM announces new funding structure, focused on cross-campus collaboration

Jan 14, 2013

The University of Missouri's new research funding program encourages projects between campuses, to get researches to expand work across fields.
Credit S&T Design / Missouri Science & Technology

It’s been dubbed the Interdisciplinary Intercampus Research Program and it has a starting fund of a million dollars. The new program’s goal is to promote research that has high potential for external funding and commercialization.

Mike Nichols is the UM system’s vice president for research and economic development. He says a successful collaboration by scientists at UMKC and engineers at Missouri S&T inspired the funding’s creation. The team developed a bioactive glass material that helps heal open wounds.

“This already is a marketable product for animals so far, and it’s also going through clinical studies for things like bed sores, etc," says Nichols, "and it shows remarkable increase in the time of healing.”

Nichols says he believes getting researchers to work across different fields makes for better results: “It’s kind of research at the boundary level between the two, that’s when real innovation takes place," he says. "New things come out of that.”

Half of the program’s current million-dollar fund came from the system. The four campuses each donated $125,000. Proposals for funding must involve faculty members from at least two UM campuses. Nichols says project proposals for the new fund are accepted on a rolling basis.