blog posts Second year of pandemic deadlier for middle aged than the first, analysis finds Nov 17, 2022 8:30 am765 views The first two years of the COVID-19 pandemic saw an increase in mortality rates, both from COVID-19 and other causes, but the groups hardest hit shifted between the first and second years, according to an analysis of publicly available data. Both years saw an increase in deaths over the five years preceding the pandemic, even with COVID-19 numbers removed. But while the first year was most deadly for those over age 65, the second year hit middle-aged adults the hardest, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign researchers found. What message did voters send this midterm election? Nov 17, 2022 8:00 am533 views The message sent by voters this midterm election? Candidates matter, since most voters assess candidates in multiple ways, not only according to party label, says University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign political science professor Brian Gaines. Project to reconnect Native American tribes with historic hide painting, artistic tradition Nov 16, 2022 8:30 am675 views The “Reclaiming Stories” project aims to reconnect members of the Miami and Peoria tribes with their artistic tradition of hide painting and to center Indigenous knowledge in interpreting the practice. What's the business potential of the metaverse? Nov 16, 2022 8:00 am441 views The metaverse’s potential for transformation means it should be on everyone’s radar, says Robert Brunner, the associate dean for innovation and chief disruption officer at the Gies College of Business at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. Study: COVID-19 policies harmed minority women's perinatal experiences, magnified inequities Nov 15, 2022 11:30 am433 views A study by a University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign team explored the impact of health care providers’ COVID-19 mitigation policies on women of color who were pregnant or gave birth during the pandemic. Nine Illinois scientists rank among world's most influential Nov 15, 2022 8:00 am5074 views Nine U. of I. researchers have been named to the 2022 Clarivate Analytics Highly Cited Researchers list. The list recognizes research scientists and social scientists who have demonstrated exceptional influence – reflected through their publication of multiple papers frequently cited by their peers during the last decade. This year’s list includes 6,938 individuals from around the world whose papers rank in the top 1% by citations for field and year in the Web of Science. Study shows the power of 'thank you' for couples Nov 14, 2022 10:15 am610 views Gratitude may be a powerful tool for couples, increasing relationship satisfaction and protecting against common stressors, says research by human development and family studies professor Allen W. Barton. How can the 2022 Global Carbon Budget report help inform UN Climate Summit? Nov 11, 2022 11:00 am435 views The Global Carbon Project published the Global Carbon Budget 2022 today, giving world leaders access to data on atmospheric carbon concentrations, emissions and trends for the 2022 United Nations Climate Summit – or COP27 – in Egypt. Illinois atmospheric scientist Atul Jain was among the many scientists worldwide who contributed data to the report. Jain talked about this year’s findings with News Bureau physical sciences editor Lois Yoksoulian. Tabla virtuoso Zakir Hussain, renowned sitar player Niladri Kumar performing at Krannert Center Nov 10, 2022 8:30 am518 views Tabla virtuoso Zakir Hussain and sitar player Niladri Kumar will perform together Nov. 16 at Krannert Center for the Performing Arts during their first tour as a duo. Previously unseen processes reveal path to better rechargeable battery performance Nov 9, 2022 12:00 pm1015 views To design better rechargeable ion batteries, engineers and chemists from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign collaborated to combine a powerful new electron microscopy technique and data mining to visually pinpoint areas of chemical and physical alteration within ion batteries. Pianist Rochelle Sennet, Sinfonia da Camera to perform work by Pulitzer Prize-winning Black composer Nov 9, 2022 11:15 am263 views Pianist Rochelle Sennet and Sinfonia da Camera will perform a work by Pulitzer Prize-winning composer George Walker to commemorate the 100th anniversary of his birth. Bringing a game to life through dance Nov 4, 2022 8:30 am759 views I'm in my little sister's room, where I've grabbed her Bop It! toy from her desk. I will use this toy to structure the dance I'm choreographing. I have my little black notebook and favorite black pen nearby. My phone leans against my computer, ready to record. I pull the Bop It! lever to start the game. Is the independent state legislature theory constitutionally valid? Nov 3, 2022 8:00 am1006 views The debate surrounding the independent state legislature theory, which is at the heart of the U.S. Supreme Court Moore v. Harper case, is ultimately a lopsided one that, under a principled originalist approach, should result in the court rejecting the theory, says Vikram Amar, the dean of the University of Illinois College of Law and a constitutional law scholar and expert on this theory. Refugee teens in Uganda who 'sext' more likely to use condoms, studies find Nov 2, 2022 11:15 am569 views Studies led by social work professor Moses Okumu found that teens in Uganda who "sexted" were more likely to use condoms and that the online media they use may be means of providing sexual health interventions. New Illinois law improves access to services for young children with disabilities or delays Nov 1, 2022 9:45 am964 views A new Illinois law makes Illinois children up to age 3 who are involved with the state’s child welfare agency automatically eligible for early intervention services. Special education professor Catherine Corr was on the working group that proposed policy changes for the law. Artificial intelligence and molecule machine join forces to generalize automated chemistry Oct 28, 2022 11:30 am1830 views Artificial intelligence, building-block chemistry and a molecule-making machine teamed up to find the best general reaction conditions for synthesizing chemicals important to biomedical and materials research – a finding that could speed innovation and drug discovery as well as make complex chemistry automated and accessible. Researchers at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign and collaborators in Poland and Canada reported their findings in the journal Science. How has national security policy changed in the Biden administration? Oct 26, 2022 8:00 am491 views The Biden administration’s new national security policy represents a shift to compete with China’s growing power, particularly to make strategic public investments in key industrial areas such as semiconductors, says Illinois law professor Patrick Keenan, an expert in counterterrorism law and international criminal law. Why do we love horror films? Oct 25, 2022 9:15 am815 views Horror films let us “choose the shape of our fears and then to face up to those fears,” said English professor Jim Hansen. A marvelous morning of migratory bird banding Oct 25, 2022 8:00 am810 views My alarm is going off as I quietly, yet eagerly, get out of bed at the dark and early time of 4 a.m. Today, I get to do something that I love and that also benefits bird conservation. I arrive just before dawn at the U. of I.’s Phillips Tract, a former farm that is now a 130-acre natural area just east of Urbana and is used for scientific research and student training. I unlock the gate, park and gather the supplies I keep on site. Then I wait for the volunteers to arrive. The team today is a dedicated mix of staff, graduate students and undergraduates – all of whom are committed to helping capture, band and monitor the birds that use this site. Illinois journal highlights new findings on the Black Death's timeline, origin Oct 24, 2022 9:30 am670 views The Black Death was killing people in Asia more than a century before it was seen in Europe, according to new evidence put forth in a special issue of “The Medieval Globe.” Vivifying ikebana: Japanese flower arranging Oct 21, 2022 8:15 am594 views Sitting at the long covered tables in the heart of Japan House, I close my eyes. All 18 of us do. We are students in the Japan House class Ikebana: The Art of Japanese Flower Arrangement. Professor Kimiko Gunji is introducing our sixth ikebana arrangement, and this is our first step. My socked feet glide on the smooth hardwood floor as I sit in silence and think. What kokoro – emotion, essence, idea – do I want to convey? Paper: Regional public universities increase access, social mobility for nearby residents Oct 20, 2022 8:00 am1444 views By broadening access to higher education in their local geographic area, regional public universities increase the economic and social mobility of the residents in their counties, says new research co-written by a team of University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign economists. Learning from chickens Oct 19, 2022 8:00 am510 views The first thing I notice when we step through white double doors of the growers’ house is that every one of the 1,200 or so chickens in this enormous room has stopped whatever it was doing to stare at us. A few of the birds step closer, peering at our legs as if they want to peck our shoes. But they don’t. They’re just curious. Chickens, I realize, are gawkers. Model calculates energetics of piercing fangs, claws and other biological weapons Oct 18, 2022 6:15 pm687 views Researchers have created a model that can calculate the energetics involved when one organism stabs another with its fangs, thorns, spines or other puncturing parts. Because the model can be applied to a variety of organisms, it will help scientists study and compare many types of biological puncturing tools, researchers said. It also will help engineers develop new systems to efficiently pierce materials or resist being pierced. Burke elected to National Academy of Medicine Oct 17, 2022 10:30 am1111 views University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign chemistry professor Dr. Martin D. Burke has been elected to the National Academy of Medicine for his work in chemical synthesis, molecular prosthetics and COVID-19 testing. Bringing an enslaved potter's story to the Met Oct 17, 2022 8:00 am686 views As we climb the mountain of stairs that leads to the Metropolitan Museum of Art and step inside, I’m struck by the scale and grandeur of what lies before me and the complexity, beauty and discourse it offers. I want to take in the entire museum, but I am most excited to see the stoneware jug that I first encountered while excavating in 2011. This jug is part of the museum’s “Hear Me Now: The Black Potters of Old Edgefield, South Carolina” exhibition. People who viewed sex as a leisure activity enjoyed more, better sex during the pandemic Oct 13, 2022 7:45 am1750 views People who viewed sex as a leisure activity used their pandemic downtime to engage in more frequent, creative and satisfying sex, U. of I. professor Liza Berdychevsky found in a recent survey. October Dance features premieres of dances from diverse perspectives Oct 12, 2022 12:15 pm627 views October Dance – the dance department’s fall performance – will feature premieres of dances by choreographers from diverse backgrounds. Paper: Established employees need adjustment period with new work colleagues Oct 12, 2022 8:00 am748 views Adding new employees to an established work team can have a multitude of consequences for long-standing employees, according to new research co-written by Yihao Liu, a professor of labor and employment relations and of psychology at Illinois. Team uses digital cameras, machine learning to predict neurological disease Oct 11, 2022 8:00 am1335 views In an effort to streamline the process of diagnosing patients with multiple sclerosis and Parkinson’s disease, researchers used digital cameras to capture changes in gait – a symptom of these diseases – and developed a machine-learning algorithm that can differentiate those with MS and PD from people without those neurological conditions. What is place-based adaptation to climate change? Oct 10, 2022 1:30 pm2145 views A recent Washington Post-ABC News poll states that roughly half of registered voters say climate change is either “very important” or “one of the most important issues” in their vote for Congress this year. However, many citizens struggle to understand their place in this global issue. Applied Research Institute senior research scientist Ann-Perry Witmer, also a lecturer in agricultural and biological engineering, spoke with News Bureau physical sciences editor Lois Yoksoulian about a more digestible approach to the climate crisis and encouraged readers to participate in a public panel discussion this week. Male/female plumage differences in thrushes promote species recognition Oct 10, 2022 8:30 am149 views In 1868, the naturalist Charles Darwin wrote that differences in plumage coloration between male and female birds of the same species were likely the result of sexual selection: Female birds – he used the peahen and peacock as an example – seemed to prefer the showiest males. A new study of thrushes offers evidence that another dynamic is at play, and helps explain why this phenomenon, called sexual dichromatism, is not universal among birds, its authors say. Peer adversity may cause girls to feel their self-worth is constantly at risk Oct 10, 2022 8:30 am474 views Girls with a history of adversity may be especially sensitive to situations that threaten their self-worth, according to new research by psychologists at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. New database catalogs police shootings in Illinois to improve accountability Oct 7, 2022 11:00 am1359 views The Cline Center for Advanced Social Research and an interdisciplinary team of University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign experts have developed a statewide registry on the use of lethal force by police officers in Illinois. Illinois alum's film about his brother's life and death in Vietnam to be screened on campus Oct 6, 2022 1:30 pm510 views The documentary “Jimmy in Saigon,” by Champaign native and University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign alumnus Peter McDowell, explores the life and death of McDowell’s older brother Jimmy in Vietnam in the early 1970s. What do we know about political advertising? Oct 5, 2022 1:30 pm812 views It can be challenging to distinguish between a paid political ad and one that is not in today’s media environment, especially on social media. News Bureau editor Lois Yoksoulian spoke with advertising professor Michelle Nelson about the topic. New research from Nelson and her colleagues found that most adults – even those who are politically engaged and educated – do not fully understand online targeting, sources and funding for political ads, or the unique regulatory environment for political speech that is different from commercial speech. More physical activity, less screen time linked to better executive function in toddlers, study finds Sep 29, 2022 8:00 am1484 views A new study found that 24-month-old children who spent less than 60 minutes looking at screens each day and those who engaged in daily physical activity had better executive function than their peers. Executive function includes the ability to remember, plan, pay attention, shift between tasks and regulate one's thoughts and behavior. Men's experiences of sexual racism differ in two online dating communities Sep 28, 2022 11:30 am1413 views While sexual racism abounds on dating apps, Black men who are sexual minorities reported differing forms of it on the popular apps Jack’d and Grindr, researchers at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign found. Experimental composer headlines events examining art-science connections Sep 27, 2022 11:15 am600 views David Rosenboom, a pioneer in experimental music, will lecture, perform and conduct workshops with students during a two-week series of events beginning Oct. 3. “Experimental Arts & Sciences at UIUC” is hosted by the School of Music. DNA nets capture COVID-19 virus in low-cost rapid-testing platform Sep 23, 2022 11:00 am1542 views Tiny nets woven from DNA strands can ensnare the spike protein of the virus that causes COVID-19, lighting up the virus for a fast-yet-sensitive diagnostic test – and also impeding the virus from infecting cells, opening a new possible route to antiviral treatment, according to a new study led by the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. Art about Black experiences headlines faculty exhibition at Krannert Art Museum Sep 22, 2022 9:00 am554 views The “Black on Black on Black on Black” exhibition at Krannert Art Museum showcases the work of Black art and design faculty members in a new approach to the annual faculty art event. What's behind the teacher shortage in US schools? Sep 21, 2022 1:00 pm2616 views The teacher shortages plaguing primary and secondary schools in the U.S. could be game-changers for people entering the field, according to Nancy Latham, an associate dean in the College of Education. New playwright residency program allows theatre students to work on new plays Sep 21, 2022 12:00 pm300 views Illinois theatre students are presenting the first public readings of a new play during the inaugural workshop performances of the department’s Daniel J. Sullivan Playwright-in-Residence Program. Paper: Job-quality indicator points to mixed bag for Illinois workers Sep 19, 2022 8:00 am690 views A new metric for measuring the quality of jobs in the state of Illinois finds a mix of positive and negative news for Illinois workers, says Robert Bruno, a professor of labor and employment relations at Illinois and a co-author of the research. Deformation fingerprints will help researchers identify, design better metallic materials Sep 19, 2022 8:00 am1519 views Engineers can now capture and predict the strength of metallic materials subjected to cycling loading, or fatigue strength, in a matter of hours – not the months or years it takes using current methods. Nick Holonyak Jr., pioneer of LED lighting, dies Sep 18, 2022 3:00 pm15066 views Nick Holonyak Jr., a renowned innovator of illumination, has died. The University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign professor was 93 years old. Holonyak (pronounced huh-LON-yak) is credited with the development of the first practical visible-spectrum LED, now commonly used in light bulbs, device displays and lasers worldwide. Krannert Center performance combines art, science to examine what makes us human Sep 15, 2022 2:30 pm563 views “The Joy of Regathering” combines science, music and movement to explore humanity’s place in the universe in a Sept. 17 performance at Krannert Center for the Performing Arts. What were the underlying issues of the railroad labor dispute? Sep 15, 2022 10:30 am619 views A strike by railroad unions would have been bad news for the Biden administration and an already-stressed economy, says Michael LeRoy, an expert in labor law at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign. What explains 'quiet quitting' in the workplace? Sep 15, 2022 8:00 am3022 views “Quiet quitting” means forgoing the extra mile at work but is different than work withdrawal or employee disengagement, says University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign labor expert YoungAh Park, who studies work stress and recovery. Study tracks waterbird use of Chicago-area wetlands Sep 14, 2022 8:30 am551 views A three-year study in northeastern Illinois and northwestern Indiana found that – even at small scales – emergent wetlands or ponds support many wetland bird species. The study also found that, at least in the years surveyed, the level of urbanization had little effect on most of the studied species’ use of such sites, provided the right kinds of habitat were available.