The University of Texas at Austin

Convergence of Science, Technology and Society in the 21st Century

November 30, 2012

On the first Tuesday of each month, the Austin Forum hosts for the Austin community distinguished leaders who speak from their own expertise and experience on the convergence of science, technology and society in the 21st century. Beginning with this fiscal year, Information Technology Services (ITS) is honored to be one of the sponsors of this important series.

Next week’s forum—on December 4, 2012—will focus on the UT Research Cyberinfrastructure (UTRC) initiative which is enabling research discoveries at all 15 UT System institutions, including six leading health science institutions. Through UTRC’s unique capabilities for computational research, UT System institutions are making significant discoveries that will benefit society. Speakers are:

  • Patricia D. Hurn, Ph.D., is Vice Chancellor for Research and Innovation at The University of Texas System. As the chief health research officer to UT System Administration and its six academic health center campuses, she focuses on building collaborative models of bio-health research, creating innovative science education programs, and constructing technological systems and infrastructure for the mission of discovery, such as the UTRC. She is also a Research Professor in Neurobiology in the College of Natural Sciences here at UT Austin.
  • Jay Boisseau, Ph.D., is the director of the Texas Advanced Computing Center (TACC) at the University. He provides the vision and strategy that guides TACC and has expanded the computational resources to provide world-class capabilities, culminating in two of the largest NSF awards in UT Austin history. He leads TACC’s NSF funded High Performance Computing system projects and is also instrumental in creating the UTRC, which leverages TACC's advanced computing systems and expertise to enhance the 15 UT System institutions' research programs.
  • Matthew W. Vaughn, Ph.D.,is the manager of the life sciences computing group and a research associate in computational biology at TACC. A long-time participant in the iPlant Collaborative, Dr. Vaughn joined TACC in 2010 to help advance biologists’ access to high-performance computational systems and to information visualization technologies.
  • James A. Bankson, Ph.D., is an Associate Professor in the Department of Imaging Physics at The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston. Jim enjoys close collaboration with physician/scientists, radiologists, oncologists, and basic cancer researchers to explore new opportunities and identify critical needs to ensure that imaging science advances alongside novel therapeutic approaches to improve the next generation of clinical care.

Thanks to TACC and the Office of Telecommunication Services (OTS) staff who have been working with all of the UT System institutions to expand the capabilities of the UTRC.

The presentations are really inspiring. All ITS staff are strongly urged to attend next week’s event, or a future forum. It takes place at the AT&T Executive Education and Conference Center, 1900 University, Amphitheater (Room 204), beginning at 6:30 p.m. For more information, see the Austin Forum website.

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