Nov. 10, 2011 | Research Alert

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Research Prizes and Honors

[Have you or a colleague won a research-related prize or honor? Let the Research Alert know.]

Mathematics Faculty Members Win International Prizes

Lexing YingLexing Ying Two faculty members in the Department of Mathematics have won prizes that recognize their contributions to the field early in their careers.

Lexing Ying, left, an associate professor, has been awarded the Feng Kang Prize for Scientific Computing from the Chinese Academy of Science and Alessio Figalli, right, a professor in the department, has been awarded the Peccot-Vimont Prize 2011 and Cours Peccot 2012 of the College de France.

Ying won the Feng Kang Prize for his significant contributions in fast algorithms in scientific computing. The prize has been awarded since 1995, and is awarded every other year to honor young Chinese scientists in China and abroad for their significant contributions in the broad areas of scientific computing.

Figalli's award goes to one or two mathematicians under the age of 30 who have obtained outstanding results in pure or applied mathematics. Part of the prize is to deliver a series of lectures on his research at the College de France, the “Cours Peccot.”

News and Information

Gates Foundation Announces $35 Million in Funding for Innovative Ideas in Family Health

The Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation will invest $35 million in grants to expand the pipeline of groundbreaking ideas that can help women and children live more prosperous and healthy lives.

Centennial of Battle Hall Features Celebration and Exhibit

Lexing Ying The university will mark the 100th year of Battle Hall with a celebration program from 5-8 p.m., Friday (Nov. 11, 2011).

Battle Hall was part of the university's original Forty Acres and it's been 100 years since its completion.

The program will include remarks by Lawrence Speck, a professor in the School of Architecture, in Jessen Auditorium, Homer Rainey Hall, at 5 p.m., followed by a reception in the Architecture & Planning Library in Battle Hall.

Quoted-UT Researchers in the News

Austin American-Statesman
Nov. 5, 2011
HEADLINE: Iverson: Inspiration at heart of education

Lexing Ying (This week Research Alert is highlighting an op-ed by Dr. Brent Iverson, professor and chair of the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry. He addresses the importance and interconnectedness of teaching and research. The piece was adapted from his remarks when he received a UT System Regents' Outstanding Teacher Award this year.)

As the landscape of higher education changes at the University of Texas at Austin, across Texas and throughout the United States, I know that we will make a future that is better for our students. Personally, I am excited by change and the opportunities it brings us, and optimistic about what will happen.

But as we move forward, we must never forget that higher education is about more than just teaching information. It is about human inspiration, and I personally believe that inspiration comes from the research process and the best and brightest researchers.

Research Opportunities

Important University Research Deadlines

American Recovery and Reinvestment Act

The University of Texas at Austin Stimulus Package Web page is online.

Funding Sources

Department of Commerce

Fiscal Year 2012 NMFS-Sea Grant Fellowships in Population Dynamics
Deadline: Feb. 17, 2012

Department of Homeland Security

U.S. Coast Guard
Detection of Oil Within the Water Column
Deadline: Dec. 15, 2011


Deadline: Jan. 11, 2012

Astrophysics Research and Analysis
Deadline: March 23, 2012

National Institutes of Health

High-Throughput-Enabled Structural Biology Partnerships
Deadlines: Letter of Intent, Jan. 5, 2012; Application, Feb. 5, 2012

Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality
Patient Safety and Medical Liability Reform Planning Projects
Deadline: Feb. 16, 2012

Circadian Rhythms and Alcohol-induced Tissue Injury
Deadline: Feb. 16, 2012

Translational Research for the Development of Novel Interventions for Mental Disorders
Deadline: Feb. 16, 2012

Research on Children in Military Families: The Impact of Parental Military Deployment and Reintegration on Child and Family Functioning
Deadline: June 5, 2012

Circadian Rhythms and Alcohol-induced Tissue Injury
Deadline: Feb. 16, 2012

Translational Research for the Development of Novel Interventions for Mental Disorders
Deadline: Feb. 16, 2012

National Science Foundation

Science, Technology and Society
Deadline: Feb. 1, 2012

Materials Processing and Manufacturing
Deadline: Feb. 15, 2012

Geomechanics & Geomaterials
Deadline: Feb. 15, 2012

Civil Infrastructure Systems
Deadline: Feb. 15, 2012

Operations Research
Deadline: Feb. 15, 2012

Civil Infrastructure Systems
Deadline: Feb. 15, 2012

Office of the Director of National Intelligence

Trusted Integrated Chips (TIC) Program Broad Agency Announcement
Deadline: Dec. 13, 2011

Arts, Humanities and Culture

National Endowment for the Humanities
America’s Media Makers: Development Grants
Deadline: Jan. 11, 2012

America’s Media Makers: Production Grants
Deadline: Jan. 11, 2012

Other Funding Opportunities

American Cancer Society
Research Professor
Deadlines: Letter of Intent, Feb. 1, 2012; Application, April 1, 2012

Mary Kay Foundation
Cancer Research Grant Program
Deadline: Feb. 3, 2012

Ellison Medical Foundation
Senior Scholar in Aging Awards
Deadline: Letter of Intent, March 8, 2012; Application (by invitation only), July 2012

Research Project

Analysis of Diffusion Equations with Nonlinear Singular Sources in Mean Field Games

RESEARCHER: Maria Gualdani, research assistant professor, Department of Mathematics, principal investigator
AGENCY: National Science Foundation
AMOUNT: $208,430

Maria GualdaniThe goal of this project is to investigate the evolution dynamics of a class of nonlinear diffusion equations that appear as mathematical models in life and social science:

(1) Analysis of existence and long time behavior of solutions of a free boundary problem in one and two dimensional space;

(2) Study of the regularity of solutions to a Hamilton-Jacobi-Bellman equation coupled to a Fokker-Planck diffusion equation;

(3) Analysis of long-time behavior of parabolic equations with nonlinear singular sources.

These equations present several difficulties due to high differential order as well as the underlying nonlinear structure, and new analytical tools need to be developed: some key techniques involve combination of classical partial differential equations technique with methods from statistical mechanics, optimal control and kinetic theory. Of particular interest is the study of stability and finite time blow-up phenomena in the model: in case of stability, behavior of solution for large time will be investigated (possible bifurcations or convergence towards equilibrium state). In case of blow-up, relation between formation of singularities and blow-up of the related quantities will be analyzed.

Complex, real-life systems in sociology, economics, and life sciences often contain a large number of individuals that interact and can develop a collective behavior; these are exactly the areas of sciences where this project draws the topics from and where mathematics could offer great insights and contributions. The understanding of diffusion processes and collective behavior is essential in many areas of science. The project focuses on investigating a class of mean field and kinetic models that can describe very well interactions among agents, collective behavior and averaging processes. Applications of such a study range from game theory (decisional strategies, behavior of investors), socio-economic (opinion formation, population dynamics), to biology (tumor growth, flocking) and neuroscience. The project will also provide education and training through research to undergraduate and graduate students.

The Research Alert is an electronic publication from the Office of the Vice President for Research at The University of Texas at Austin. It includes news of research honors and awards, news of research programs and deadlines, researchers quoted in news media, a listing of funding opportunities and a look at a current research project. It is available by e-mail and on the Web.

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