blog navigation

AgricultureArtsBehind the ScenesBusinessEducationEngineeringHealthHumanitiesLawLife SciencesPhysical SciencesSocial SciencesVeterinary Medicine

blog posts

  • Study finds rising ozone a hidden threat to corn

    Like atmospheric methane and carbon dioxide, ground-level ozone is on the rise. But ozone, a noxious chemical byproduct of fossil fuel combustion, has received relatively little attention as a potential threat to corn agriculture.

    A new study begins to address this lapse by exposing a genetically diverse group of corn plants in the field to future ozone levels. The study found that some members of the corn family tree are more susceptible than others to yield losses under high ozone air pollution.

  • Weighing bears, corralling otters and healing wild beasts

    How do you weigh a fully grown American black bear? These veterinary medicine students know the answer, and it's a bit more complicated than just saying, "very carefully."

  • Purple martin migration behavior perplexes researchers

    Purple martins will soon migrate south for their usual wintertime retreat, but this time the birds will be wearing what look like little backpacks, as scientists plan to track their roosting sites along the way. The researchers recently discovered that purple martins are roosting in small forest patches as they migrate from North America to Brazil, an unexpected behavior. The scientists published their findings in the Journal of Field Ornithology. 

  • Study examines effects of climate change, land loss on Louisiana’s Houma tribe

    Repeated disasters and environmental changes on Louisiana’s Gulf Coast are rapidly eroding the land, and along with it, the Houma tribe’s ability to sustain its culture, health and livelihoods.

  • Study: Personalized promotion a potential 'win-win' for retailers, consumers

    “Personalized promotion” is a potentially lucrative opportunity for retailers to extract even more money from consumer wallets that also enhances customer satisfaction, said Yuqian Xu, a professor of business administration at the Gies College of Business at Illinois.

  • How are Illinois birds faring?

    According to a new study reported in the journal Science, bird populations in North America have experienced a troubling decline in the past five decades. The scientists estimate the continent has lost close to 3 billion birds, roughly 29% of their total numbers in 1970. Senior wildlife ecologist Thomas J. Benson of the Illinois Natural History Survey discusses the status of birds in Illinois with News Bureau life sciences editor Diana Yates. Benson leads the Critical Trends Assessment Program, which monitors the biological condition of the state’s forests, wetlands and grasslands, and collects data on plants, birds and arthropods.

  • Measuring the unseen life of a river

    It’s morning on the bayou. I’m in the Calcascieu River at the Fort Polk Joint Readiness Training Center in Louisiana, and the river is teeming with life. The bank is littered with freshwater mussel shells, no doubt a feast for a raccoon last night. Cricket frogs bounce around at my feet as if loaded with tiny coiled springs.

  • What’s at stake in auto workers strike?

    The strike of more than 47,000 auto workers is a way of recouping some of what union members lost during the Great Recession, says Robert Bruno, a professor of labor and employment relations at the Urbana campus of the University of Illinois and the director of the Labor Education Program in Chicago.

  • Krannert Center performance “HOME” provides inspiration for Pygmalion’s hackathon

    The performance of “HOME” at Krannert Center for the Performing Arts is providing the inspiration for PYGHACK, the culture festival Pygmalion’s hackathon. Both consider issues related to the concepts of home and an inclusive community.

  • Ebert Symposium to feature film director Gregory Nava

    Gregory Nava, director of Latino films such as “El Norte,” “My Family” and “Selena,” will discuss his career and challenges, as well as diversity in the movie industry, as part of the Chaz and Roger Ebert Symposium coming Sept. 27 to the University of Illinois.

  • Illinois Architecture reveals presence and progress of women in the profession

    A Women’s Reunion and Symposium at the School of Architecture will recognize the contributions of female architecture graduates.

  • Researchers build microscopic biohybrid robots propelled by muscles, nerves

    Researchers have developed soft robotic devices driven by neuromuscular tissue that triggers when stimulated by light – bringing mechanical engineering one step closer to developing autonomous biobots.

  • Five professors named University Scholars for Urbana-Champaign campus

    Five Urbana-Champaign campus professors have been named University Scholars in recognition of their excellence in teaching, scholarship and service.

  • Research tracks narcissism from young adulthood to middle age

    The belief that one is smarter, better looking, more successful and more deserving than others – a personality trait known as narcissism – tends to wane as a person matures, a new study confirms. But not for everyone, and not to the same extent.

  • Endangered animals project looks at tigers, habitat loss, climate change

    University of Illinois art professor Deke Weaver will present “TIGER” this fall. It’s the fifth performance in his project “The Unreliable Bestiary,” telling stories about endangered animals and habitats.

  • Researchers unveil new volcanic eruption forecasting technique

    Volcanic eruptions and their ash clouds pose a significant hazard to population centers and air travel, especially those that show few to no signs of unrest beforehand. Geologists are now using a technique traditionally used in weather and climate forecasting to develop new eruption forecasting models. By testing if the models are able to capture the likelihood of past eruptions, the researchers are making strides in the science of volcanic forecasting

  • Ebert Symposium to focus on inclusion in movies and media

    This year’s Ebert Symposium will focus on inclusion and diversity in the media industry, with a keynote address provided by Stacy Smith, director of the Annenberg Inclusion Initiative, a global think tank studying inequality in entertainment.

  • OCCRL hosts conference on racial justice, equitable outcomes in higher education

    Racial justice on community college campuses is the focal point of an upcoming institute in San Diego, the third such conference organized by the U. of I. Office of Community College Research and Leadership.

  • Study: Action-oriented goals produce higher probability of purchases under tight deadlines

    If you want sell a product or service quickly, it helps to try a busy consumer, says new research co-written by U. of I. psychology professor Dolores Albarracin.

  • Financial education programs, income-based repayment plans promote prosperity

    People with student loans who participate in financial education programs become better financial managers, building personal wealth after college, University of Illinois researchers found in a recent study.

  • Paper: As an act of self-disclosure, workplace creativity can be risky business

    It’s increasingly common for managers to instruct employees to “be creative” during brainstorming sessions. But according to a new paper from Jack Goncalo, a professor of business administration at the Gies College of Business at Illinois, being creative in the workplace is potentially fraught with peril because creativity itself is deeply personal.

  • Would changes to capital gains taxes spur the economy?

    Indexing capital gains to inflation could be a simple fix to stimulate a teetering economy, but several significant implementation hurdles remain, said Richard L. Kaplan, an internationally recognized expert on U.S. tax policy and the Guy Raymond Jones Chair in Law at Illinois.

  • Researchers develop technique to de-ice surfaces in seconds

    Airplane wings, wind turbines and indoor heating systems all struggle under the weight and chill of ice. Defrosting and de-icing techniques are energy-intensive, however, and often require large masses of ice to melt completely in order to work. Researchers from the University of Illinois and Kyushu University in Japan have developed a new technique that requires only a thin layer of ice at the interface of a surface to melt, allowing it to slide off under the force of gravity.

  • Krannert Art Museum invites new perspectives on modern and contemporary art

    “Art Since 1948” – a new, long-term installation at Krannert Art Museum – showcases the museum’s modern and contemporary collection.

  • Tiny thermometer measures how mitochondria heat up the cell by unleashing proton energy

    Armed with a tiny new thermometer probe that can quickly measure temperature inside of a cell, University of Illinois researchers have illuminated a mysterious aspect of metabolism: heat generation.

  • Computer science education for Illinois children, teachers to be summit focus

    The inaugural Illinois Statewide K-12 Computer Science Education Summit will bring together teachers, lawmakers and others stakeholders to discuss computer science education in Illinois schools.

  • Matsuri Festival at Japan House incorporates Indian culture

    Matsuri Festival at Japan House celebrates the end of summer with Asian food, art and musical performances.

  • Children use video games to explore science in two NSF-funded projects

    U. of I. educational psychology professor H. Chad Lane receives $3.2 million from the National Science Foundation to fund two projects that use the video game Minecraft to explore big ideas in science.

  • Would cutting payroll taxes help prevent recession?

    Cutting the payroll tax could represent the middle-class tax cut that President Trump campaigned on – although changes would need to go through the legislative process and any economic stimulus likely wouldn’t been seen until after the November 2020 election, said Richard L. Kaplan, an internationally recognized expert on U.S. tax policy and the Guy Raymond Jones Chair in Law at Illinois.

  • New technique gives polyurethane waste a second life

    Polyurethane is used in a wide range of materials, including paints, foam mattresses, seat cushions and insulation. These diverse applications generate large amounts of waste. A team at the University of Illinois has developed a method to break down polyurethane waste and turn it into other useful products.

  • Flatlands Dance Film Festival to screen documentary on flamenco dancer, short films

    The Flatlands Dance Film Festival will screen a documentary about Spanish flamenco dancer “La Chana” and short films from around the world.

  • Germany transformed under Nazis in 100 days. Do we understand why?

    With world leaders gathering Sept. 1 to mark the 80th anniversary of the start of World War II in Europe, U. of I. history professor Peter Fritzsche describes how Germans came to embrace Nazi rule, especially in Hitler’s first 100 days.

  • Indigenous scholars confront the power, limitations of genomics

    They traveled to central Illinois from Manitoba, Mexico City, Nova Scotia and 18 U.S. states, bringing expertise in a variety of fields, including anthropology, biomedical engineering, ethics, health and environmental policy, law, neurobiology, and social and behavioral science.

    Participants in the 2019 Summer internship for INdigenous peoples in Genomics spent a week together in the classroom and the lab, learning not only how to amplify and sequence a fragment of their own DNA, but also discussing the implications of genomics research involving their ancestors and communities.

  • Dog down: Effort helps emergency medical staff treat law enforcement K-9s

    Recognizing a gap in care for law enforcement K-9s injured on the job, a team of veterinarians, emergency medical services experts and canine handlers has developed protocols for emergency medical service personnel who may be called upon to help treat and transport the injured dogs.

  • In product design, imagining end user’s feelings leads to more original outcomes

    In new product design, connecting with an end user’s heart, rather than their head, can lead to more original and creative outcomes, says published research co-written by Ravi Mehta, a professor of business administration at Illinois and an expert in product development and marketing.

  • Krannert Art Museum acquires Illinois alumnus Hal Fischer’s conceptual photographs

    Krannert Art Museum has acquired the work of pioneering gay photographer and University of Illinois alumnus Hal Fischer.

  • Researchers turn off backscattering, aim to improve optical data transmission

    Engineers at the University of Illinois have found a way to redirect misfit light waves to reduce energy loss during optical data transmission. In a study, researchers exploited an interaction between light and sound waves to suppress the scattering of light from material defects – which could lead to improved fiber optic communication. Their findings are published in the journal Optica.

  • Printing flattens polymers, improving electrical and optical properties

    Researchers have found a way to use polymer printing to stretch and flatten twisted molecules so that they conduct electricity better. A team led by chemical and biomolecular engineers from the University of Illinois report their findings in the journal Science Advances.

  • How can educators, coaches support student-athletes’ academic success?

    Coaches and educators should work together to help athletes achieve their full potential, U. of I. scholars and former collegiate athletes Joseph L. Cross and Bruce W. Fouke say in a new study.

  • Optimistic people sleep better, longer, study finds

    People who are the most optimistic tend to be better sleepers, University of Illinois social work professor Rosalba Hernandez found in a new study of 3,500 young and middle-aged adults.

  • Researchers embrace imperfection to improve biomolecule transport

    While watching the production of porous membranes used for DNA sorting and sequencing, University of Illinois researchers wondered how tiny steplike defects formed during fabrication could be used to improve molecule transport. They found that the defects – formed by overlapping layers of membrane – make a big difference in how molecules move along a membrane surface. Instead of trying to fix these flaws, the team set out to use them to help direct molecules into the membrane pores.

  • Artificial intelligence could help air travelers save a bundle

    Researchers are using artificial intelligence to help airlines price ancillary services such as checked bags and seat reservations in a way that is beneficial to customers’ budget and privacy, as well as to the airline industry’s bottom line.

  • Bringing yesterday's plants to digital life

    It’s about 65 degrees Fahrenheit in the herbarium, and the archival paper on which the plant specimen is mounted feels soft between my cold fingers. My hands are instantly warmed as I place the sheet in the light box. I check the computer monitor; everything looks good. I hit the spacebar.

  • Infants expect leaders to right wrongs, study finds

    Infants 17 months of age expect leaders – but not others – to intervene when one member of their group transgresses against another, a new study reveals. The findings add to growing evidence that children in their second year of life have a well-developed understanding of social hierarchies and power dynamics, the researchers say. 

  • Study: Black students receive fewer warnings from teachers about misbehavior

    A new study of racial and ethnic disparities in school discipline found that black middle school students were significantly less likely than their white peers to receive warnings from teachers about misbehavior.

  • Illinois social work professor named Robert Wood Johnson Foundation Health Policy Fellow

    Liliane Windsor, a professor of social work at the University of Illinois, has been named a Health Policy Fellow by the National Academy of Medicine and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.

  • Coping skills program helps social service workers reduce stress, trauma after disasters

    Caregivers Journey of Hope can help social service workers to mitigate the stress and trauma they may experience while helping others recover from disasters, U. of I. researchers found in a new study.

  • Left eye? Right eye? American robins have preference when looking at decoy eggs

    Just as humans are usually left- or right-handed, other species sometimes prefer one appendage, or eye, over the other. A new study reveals that American robins that preferentially use one eye significantly more than the other when looking at their own clutch of eggs are also more likely to detect, and reject, a foreign egg placed in their nest by another bird species – or by a devious scientist.

  • For anemonefish, male-to-female sex change happens first in the brain

    The anemonefish is a gender-bending marvel. It starts out as a male, but can switch to female when circumstances allow – for example, when the only female present dies or disappears. In a new study, researchers found that the male-to-female sex-change occurs first in the fish’s brain and only later involves the gonads – sometimes after a delay of months or years.

  • Search for new semiconductors heats up with gallium oxide

    University of Illinois electrical engineers have cleared another hurdle in high-power semiconductor fabrication by adding the field’s hottest material – beta-gallium oxide – to their arsenal. Beta-gallium oxide is readily available and promises to convert power faster and more efficiently than today’s leading semiconductor materials – gallium nitride and silicon, the researchers said.