Research at the University of Pittsburgh

The University of Pittsburgh is distinguished among colleges and universities for the research activities of its faculty, graduate students, and research staff. Much of the research performed is the individual effort of members of the University community, while some emerges from the activities of organized teams. The quantity and quality of research conducted at the University of Pittsburgh exemplify the University's status as a major public research university. The University of Pittsburgh is one of 61 members of the Association of American Universities which collectively performs a major share of basic research in the United States and Canada. The University seeks and receives funding for programs that impact individuals, institutions, and businesses locally, that is, in Allegheny County and the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, but also those internationally.

Research activities are conducted on-campus in the various schools and in research centers such as the Learning Research and Development Center, the University Center for International Studies, the University Center for Social and Urban Research, and the Center for Philosophy of Science.

Off-campus facilities include the Allegheny Observatory, which is a specialized facility whereby astronomers are provided the equipment necessary to advance their research; the Pittsburgh Supercomputing Center -- a partnership between the University of Pittsburgh, Carnegie Mellon University, and Westinghouse Electric Corporation -- which provides access to the most advanced computing resources available; the interdisciplinary Center for Biotechnology and Bioengineering; the Pymatuning Laboratory of Ecology; and the University of Pittsburgh Applied Research Center, with facilities made available for both University research and private ventures.

In the health sciences area of the University, investigators throughout the six schools of the health sciences, related institutes and centers, and affiliated hospitals are engaged in a substantial program of basic and clinical research. The University ranks 12th in the nation among institutions receiving National Institutes of Health funding. The UPMC Health System is home to the world's foremost organ transplantation program, whose activities include multi-organ transplants, cellular transplants, research to develop improved immunosuppressant medications and techniques, and investigations of temporary and potentially permanent mechanical assist devices. The Biomedical Science Tower's basic research laboratories accommodate the growing research efforts in molecular genetics, biochemistry, cancer, psychiatry, pharmacology, and transplantation.

The University of Pittsburgh Cancer Institute, a National Cancer Institute-designated comprehensive cancer center, is a consortium of the University, its affiliated hospitals, and Carnegie Mellon University. In addition to providing diagnosis and treatment, particularly to residents of the tri-state area, the Institute sponsors an intensive program of clinical and basic research.

The UPMC Health System's Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinic has earned an international reputation for treatment of psychiatric disorders and research on their causes.

The Office of Research has responsibilities to stimulate, develop, and facilitate research, scholarship, and related scholarly activities. To achieve these goals, the Office provides an array of services including identification and dissemination of funding source information; assistance in the development of projects, programs, and proposals; continuing education to the various University units regarding detailed facets of research administration policy and procedure; review of proposal and award documents for compliance with sponsor and University procedures; and negotiation and acceptance of all grant and contract awards for the University. In conjunction with the University Research Council, the Office administers the Central Research Development Fund, which is a fund that provides small grants to faculty for pilot-phase projects.

The Office of Technology Management encourages invention and innovation; protects intellectual property rights by patent, copyright, or other means; transfers the results of research to the public by bringing scientists and the business community together in a relationship of mutual advantage; generates income for research and education; and contributes to national and regional industrial competitiveness and economic development.

Awarded annually, the Chancellor's Distinguished Research Award recognizes the outstanding scholarly accomplishments of up to five of the University's faculty. Each award consists of a cash prize and a grant for the support of the faculty member's teaching and research.

Building upon the strengths of faculty and graduate student activity in research, the University has also intensified efforts to involve a growing number of undergraduate students in research projects. Indeed, the integration of research with teaching and public service serves to make the University of Pittsburgh one of the most outstanding universities in the region and throughout the world.


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University of Pittsburgh Fact Book, 1999-2000
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