Research

With a commitment to free and open inquiry, our scholars take an interdisciplinary approach to research that spans arts to engineering, medicine to education. Their work transforms the way we understand the world, advancing fields of study, and often creating new ones. Generating new knowledge for the benefit of present and future generations, UChicago research has had an impact around the globe, leading to such breakthroughs as discovering the link between cancer and genetics, establishing revolutionary theories of economics, and developing tools to produce reliably excellent urban schooling.

Research News

Modern genetics confirm ancient relationship between fins and hands

December 29, 2014—Paleontologists have documented the evolutionary adaptations necessary for ancient lobe-finned fish to transform pectoral fins used underwater into strong, bony structures, such as those of Tiktaalik roseae. This enabled these emerging tetrapods, animals with limbs, to crawl in shallow water or on land. But evolutionary biologists have wondered why the modern structure called the autopod—comprising wrists and fingers or ankles and toes—has no obvious morphological counterpart in the fins of living fishes.

Nizar Ibrahim named 2015 TED Fellow

December 22, 2014—Paleontologist and National Geographic Emerging Explorer Nizar Ibrahim has been named a 2015 TED Fellow—the first paleontologist in the history of the program.

Neuroscientists identify brain mechanisms that predict generosity in children

December 18, 2014—University of Chicago developmental neuroscientists have found specific brain markers that predict generosity in children. Those neural markers appear to be linked to both social and moral evaluation processes.

Crime Lab New York will help promote evidence-based policies to prevent crime, violence

December 17, 2014—Leading researchers will provide policymakers in New York City with rigorous, objective, scientific evidence to help reduce crime, violence and the toll taken by aspects of the criminal justice system.

‘Enhancing life’ focus of new Divinity School project

December 17, 2014—The University of Chicago Divinity School has launched a two-year, interdisciplinary project aimed at understanding what it means to enhance life and how the human aspiration for a better life can be fulfilled.