The Grand Challenges initiative

The University of Nebraska-Lincoln community has identified seven grand challenge thematic areas in which to focus its expertise and resources, as outlined in the N2025 Strategic Plan. Now, faculty are charged with imagining how their areas of research, scholarship, creative activity and outreach intersect with these challenges and what specific opportunities within these areas they could work across disciplines to help solve. The Chancellor’s Office and the Office of Research and Economic Development have committed $40 million over four years to invest in strategic, goal-based solutions.

Tell us about your expertise and which grand challenges you’re interested in exploring. This will enable the Office of Research and Economic Development to begin identifying and matching scholars with similar interests.

The deadline to submit Grand Challenges grant proposals for the 2021-2022 grant cycle was April 29, 2022. Awards will be announced in late June. Check back for events planned for fall 2022.

Steering Committee

Trey Andrews III, psychology 

Tala Awada, School of Natural Resources

Christian Binek, physics

Brittany Duncan, computer science and engineering

Megan Elliott, Johnny Carson Center for Emerging Media Arts

Shane Farritor, mechanical and materials engineering

Nkenge Friday, Office of Diversity and Inclusion

Rachael Herpel, Daugherty Water for Food Global Institute

Sherri Jones, education and human sciences

Sarah Karle, architecture

Elizabeth Lorang, University Libraries

Elsbeth Magilton, law

Jennifer Nelson, Office of Research and Economic Development

Charles Chioma Nwaizu, food science and technology

Angie Pannier, biological systems engineering

Mark Riley, engineering

Clinton Rowe, earth and atmospheric sciences

Susan Sheridan, Nebraska Center for Research on Children, Youth, Families and Schools

Shari Stenberg, English and women’s and gender studies

William Thomas, history

Shari Veil, journalism and mass communications

Rick Bevins, interim associate vice chancellor for research

Nathan Meier, assistant vice chancellor

Staff members: Lisa MaupinHeidi Uhing and Ashley Washburn, Office of Research and Economic Development