National Academies call for applications

05/04/04

WASHINGTON On May 5 the National Academies Keck Futures Initiative will begin accepting applications from active researchers for the Designing Nanostructures at the Interface Between Biomedical and Physical Systems conference which will be held from Nov. 19 to 21, 2004, in Irvine, Calif. Applications are due May 14, 2004, and can be completed online at www.nationalacademies.org/keck. Invitations to attend the conference will be sent by late June. The National Academies Keck Futures Initiative will pay all travel expenses, including lodging and meals, for invited attendees.

Conference participants will discuss the emerging science of nanotechnology, which investigates how to build matter on a very small scale by manipulating individual molecules or atoms that are 100,000 times smaller than the width of a human hair.

The National Academies Keck Futures Initiative conferences bring together over 100 of the nation's best and brightest researchers from academic, industrial, and government laboratories to ask questions about -- and to discover interdisciplinary connections between - important areas of cutting-edge research. This year's conference provides an opportunity for researchers from different disciplines to focus on new questions in nanotechnology. Participants will gain not only a wider perspective but also, in many instances, new insights and techniques that might be applied in their own work.

The conference will include plenary sessions on topics such as the future of nanomaterials and an overview of biological machines. Two poster sessions are scheduled, and all attendees are expected to display a poster or interactive display. Conference attendees will spend approximately 10 hours in focus groups over the three days exploring questions related to nanoscience and nanotechnology. Substantial time is built into the schedule for informal networking among the attendees, who will include researchers, as well as representatives from funding organizations, university leaders, and the science media.

Funded by a $40 million grant from the W.M. Keck Foundation, the National Academies Keck Futures Initiative is a 15-year effort to catalyze interdisciplinary inquiry and to enhance communication among researchers, funding agencies, universities, and the general public with the object of stimulating interdisciplinary research at the most exciting frontiers. The Futures Initiative builds on three pillars of vital and sustained research: interdisciplinary encounters that counterbalance specialization and isolation; the identification and exploration of new research topics; and communication that bridges languages, cultures, habits of thought, and institutions. Toward these goals, the multifaceted National Academies Keck Futures Initiative incorporates three core activities each year: Futures conferences, Futures grants, and National Academies Communication Awards.

To encourage conference attendees to pursue further interdisciplinary research on nanotechnology, the National Academies Keck Futures Initiative will award seed grants to selected researchers who attend the conference.

For application procedures and requirements, visit www.nationalacademies.org/keck or contact Marty Perreault at 949-387-5783.

Source: Eurekalert & others

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