American Academy of Arts and Sciences taps UNL


Ashley Washburn, December 9, 2015 | View original publication

American Academy of Arts and Sciences taps UNL

The University of Nebraska-Lincoln has accepted an invitation from the American Academy of Arts and Sciences to become a University Affiliate of the Academy. In accepting the invitation Dec. 3, UNL joins 64 other institutions that partner with the Academy by participating in its studies on higher education and by helping to support its fellowships and outreach programs.

Founded in 1780, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences is one of the country’s oldest learned societies and independent policy research centers, convening leaders from the academic, business and government sectors to respond to the challenges facing the nation and the world. It has more than 5,000 elected members who are leaders from around the globe.

Academy research focuses on higher education, the humanities and the arts; science and technology policy; global security and energy; and American institutions and the public good.

As a University Affiliate, UNL will partner with the Academy and the nation’s other leading colleges and universities. Members share a commitment to Academy projects and research designed to advance the common good in a variety of ways – in particular, by ensuring the vitality of research in American higher education. As the Academy adapts its mission for the 21st century, its University Affiliates have become a critical source of new ideas and expertise.

“It is indeed an honor for the university to be invited to join this prestigious group,” Chancellor Harvey Perlman said. “For centuries, the American Academy of Arts and Sciences has been at the forefront of bringing business, academic and government leaders together to address the important issues of the day. We look forward to joining our fellow institutions in this endeavor.”

Joseph Francisco, dean of the College of Arts and Sciences and an Academy member, said UNL’s inclusion in the Academy aligns with the university’s strengths, as well as those of the college – key areas of the sciences, social sciences, humanities and public affairs.

“This also raises our visibility as a leading research institution that can contribute to the strengths of the Academy’s endeavors on emerging issues in involving interdisciplinary and multidisciplinary research that is the driver for new innovations,” Francisco said.

University Affiliates can submit proposals to the Academy’s Exploratory Fund, which supports experts who want to work with others around the world to consider problems in a fresh way or to look over the horizon for issues and opportunities not well understood.

The Academy also works with University Affiliates to host Academy Stated Meetings and other gatherings on campus for the community and Academy members.

In accepting the invitation, UNL joins a majority of other members of the Big Ten and Committee on Institutional Cooperation.

The Academy membership encompasses over 4,600 fellows and 600 Foreign Honorary Members and reflects the full range of disciplines and professions: mathematics, the physical and biological sciences, medicine, the social sciences and humanities, business, government, public affairs, and the arts. Among the fellows are more than 250 Nobel laureates and 60 Pulitzer Prize winners.