2022 INSTITUTIONAL ACCOMPLISHMENTS
Research and innovation
Broadening expertise and impact
Our global system powers seamless research collaborations worldwide, maximizing the capacity of innovators everywhere to develop solutions to society’s urgent challenges.
in external research awards, a 374% increase since 2006
in research expenditures from external funding, an increase of 244% since 2006
Impact on health, security, and sustainability
Seattle-Boston AI expertise to advance healthy aging
Seattle data scientist and computational biologist Ram Hariharan is partnering with Northeastern colleagues in Boston to build an “aging clock” to measure individuals’ biological aging rates. It’s powered by AI that learns from patient data, including changes from the molecular to the behavioral across the lifespan. The work is part of a larger quest to understand and prevent age-related diseases, such as cancer, by pinpointing when they start and delivering individually targeted cures.
A $36M collaboration to safeguard ‘soft’ targets
Northeastern is leading a multidisciplinary consortium of universities in seven states plus Puerto Rico to build a surveillance system to protect so-called soft targets—such as schools and churches—from mass shootings and other threats. The system will provide decision-makers with the vital information they need to assess situations and coordinate responses. The Department of Homeland Security awarded Northeastern $36 million to lead the center and build the system.
Floating wetlands designed to protect coastal cities
Northeastern Assistant Professor Julia Hopkins is part of a startup that is developing interconnected rings of floating wetlands to stave off coastal city flooding. Aptly named “Emerald Tutus” consist of biodegradable, circular mats seven feet in diameter. By growing marsh grasses on top and seaweed below, the mats act like sponges to absorb wave energy. Emerald Tutus are already in the water near Salem, Massachusetts.
Multicampus study helping unlock COVID-19 mysteries
Northeastern researchers who devised the university’s protocol to test for and evaluate the spread of SARS-CoV-2 are gaining insights into the virus’s evolution and the puzzling variabilities of COVID-19. Experts at the Life Sciences Testing Center and the Observational Health Data Science and Informatics Center are basing their study on anonymized data collected from mid-2020 to mid-2022 at Northeastern campuses in Boston and Charlotte, North Carolina.
Expanding our faculty expertise
tenured/tenure-track hires since 2006, including 61 in 2021–2022
faculty with interdisciplinary appointments, up 281% since 2012
A few of our talented new faculty
Sofia Bosch Gomez
Assistant Professor of Art + Design
Joint appointment with Northeastern’s Burnes Center for Social Change
Professor of Physics and Electrical and Computer Engineering
Assistant Professor of Criminology and Criminal Justice, and Cultures, Societies, and Global Studies
Faculty awards, honors, and the call to serve
faculty awards for early-career achievement, including 13 National Science Foundation CAREER awards
Fulbright faculty awards supporting global research and scholarship
Network of support for DeafBlind accessibility venture
Samantha Johnson, E’21/MS’21, founded Tatum Robotics to develop empowering technology for the DeafBlind community. The startup is developing a low-cost robotic hand to fingerspell tactile sign language and a safe, compliant arm to sign more complex words and phrases. In addition to support from Northeastern’s student-run venture incubator, IDEA, Johnson earned first place in the Women Who Empower 2022 Innovator Awards.
Product design gets an AI makeover
New product development relies on some distinctly traditional techniques for market research, such as focus groups, customer interviews, and sales data. Ada Tech LLC is creating a platform to reinvent the innovation process: harnessing artificial intelligence to better understand customer needs and increase the diversity and market impact of new products. The startup’s co-founders—Northeastern professors Paolo Ciuccarelli, Tucker Marion, and Mohsen Moghaddam—received a National Science Foundation grant for their cross-disciplinary work.
Roux Institute attracts Chilean startup to Maine
In remote settings, field workers in forestry, shipping, and other industries must contend with poor communication networks. Chilean entrepreneur Max Echeverría founded Eskuad to develop a data management platform to solve that problem—then relocated his startup to Portland, Maine, and Northeastern’s Roux Institute. Eskuad was among 10 startups to receive funding and mentoring through the institute’s inaugural Techstars Accelerator.
San Francisco residency sparks footwear startup
With a passion for fashion, Gabrielle Whittle has created a shoe that can be worn as high-heeled or flat, thanks to its adjustable sole and detachable heel. The College of Engineering alumna developed the idea during her Semester in San Francisco, Northeastern’s immersive entrepreneurship residency. Whittle used techniques from her prior product design work to bring her vision to life, aided by a $10,000 Innovator Award from Women Who Empower.