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

Renewable energy mandates reduce carbon dioxide emissions—but at a cost

May 24, 2019—A new working paper co-authored by University of Chicago scholars found that popular programs at a state level—enacted in 29 states and the District of Columbia—are inefficient in reducing carbon emissions and come at a high cost to consumers. They found these Renewable Portfolio Standards increased prices by as much as 17 percent, making the policy’s cost of reducing carbon emissions more expensive than current estimates of the benefits.

Computer scientists design way to close ‘backdoors’ in AI-based security systems

May 23, 2019—It sounds like a plot out of a spy novel, with a touch of cyberpunk: An agent approaches a secure location, protected by a facial recognition system, accessible only to a head of state or CEO. Flashing an unusually shaped earring, the agent tricks the system into thinking they’re that VIP, opening the door and exposing the secrets inside. The key—an undetectable “sleeper cell” was placed inside the AI behind the security system months or years earlier to grant access to anyone wearing the specified jewelry.

The impact of economic disparities on children’s development

May 19, 2019—A leading developmental psychologist, Prof. Ariel Kalil in her research examines the historical evolution of income-based gaps in parenting behavior and children’s skills. Kalil recently sat down with the University of Chicago Harris School of Public Policy to discuss the science behind parental decision-making and talk about her innovative work as co-director of the Behavioral Insights and Parenting Lab.

Four UChicago faculty elected to American Academy of Arts and Sciences

May 17, 2019—Four University of Chicago faculty members have been elected to the American Academy of Arts and Sciences, one of the nation’s oldest and most prestigious honorary societies. They include Profs. Francisco Bezanilla, Mercedes Pascual, Margaret Beale Spencer and Kenneth Warren.

Three third-year students awarded Barry Goldwater Scholarships

May 15, 2019—Keir Adams, Nikhil Pandit and Maritha Wang, all third-year students in the College, have received prestigious Barry Goldwater Scholarships, awarded annually based on academic merit in the natural sciences, mathematics and engineering. They are among the 496 students to earn one- and two-year scholarships—the preeminent undergraduate award of its type in these fields—which cover the cost of tuition, fees, books, and room and board up to $7,500 per year.