More than 20 researchers and UChicago’s Executive Vice President for Research, Innovation and National Laboratories recently came together to share their work, form new collaborations, and address shared hurdles at a multidisciplinary workshop on imaging and noise.

“This is team science, wildly transdisciplinary, and fun,” said Julian Solway, MD, Director of the University of Chicago Institute for Translational Medicine (ITM) that co-organized the July 29 event. “We’re finding that we have commonalities and synergies that we hadn’t recognized.”

The workshop is the first of three funded through UChicago’s Big Ideas Generator (BIG) initiative by a grant from The John Templeton Foundation to break down silos and help faculty forge new research partnerships across specialties. Participants had expertise in areas ranging from astronomy and astrophysics to biology and radiology to computer science.

The presentations and dynamic discussions that followed covered topics like deep learning, perception, and potential collaborations to build technical solutions to their shared research imaging hurdles.

“Researchers really want to work together, but often they aren’t aware of the problems that cross fields and create opportunities for great collaboration,” said Marsha Rosner, PhD, Director Emerita of the Ben May Department for Cancer Research and a co-organizer of the event.

Attendees included Eric D. Isaacs, Executive Vice President for Research, Innovation and National Laboratories; Melina Hale, PhD, University of Chicago Medicine Dean for Faculty Affairs; Connie Lee, PhD, Biological Sciences Division (BSD) Assistant Dean for Basic Science; and Nicola Ferrier, PhD, of Argonne National Laboratory.

Presenters included Julian Solway, MD; Marsha Rosner, PhD; Kasey Day from Ben Glick’s Lab; Norbert Scherer, PhD; Andrey Elagin, PhD, from Henry Frisch’s Lab; Erik Shirokoff, PhD; Greg Shakhnarovich, PhD; Maryellen Giger, PhD; Bobby Kasthuri, MD, PhD; Steven Shevell, PhD; Jeremy Wolfe, PhD, of Harvard Medical School, Boston University, and MIT; Yali Amit, PhD; Bob Rosner, PhD; and Ian Foster, PhD, Director of the Computation Institute, a joint institute of the University of Chicago and Argonne National Laboratory.

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