October 25, 2017
Funding Connection

Greater Manhattan Project
The Princeton Review recently named Kansas State University as having the No. 1 Town-Gown relationship in America . For 154 years, Manhattan has been the quintessential college community. In many ways, the town and our university have grown up together.

As the global knowledge-based economy continues to unfold, Manhattan must continue to evolve and become an even better community to competitively attract and retain globally talented people. The next 20 years will be a race for talent on a worldwide basis unlike anything we have seen before. This race is one we must win not only to advance the competitiveness and prosperity of Manhattan but also to advance our university and its land-grant mission.

In service to this goal, Manhattan area leaders initiated the Greater Manhattan Project (GMP) to create a consensus-based regional vision for the next five years and the decades to follow. Led by the Manhattan Area Chamber of Commerce, the GMP steering committee includes key leaders of our community, including K-State Vice President for Research Peter Dorhout. The steering committee and the national consultant hired for the project are nearing the end of their work to achieve greater quality of life, prosperity, and opportunity in Manhattan.

Generally, GMP will set strategies to enhance talent sustainability, economic diversification, community amenities and inclusiveness, growth management, and entrepreneurial dynamism. Early in the coming year, the Greater Manhattan Project will release its findings and begin a process that includes the entire community and our university to establish strategies to achieve a shared goal to position Manhattan as globally competitive and globally talented community of substance, purpose, and sustainability. I hope you'll look for opportunities to contribute to this effort.

— Kent Glasscock, president, Kansas State University Institute for Commercialization
Events and announcements
  • Learn about the Congressionally Directed Medical Research Program at 2:30 p.m. October 26 in the Union Wildcat Chamber. The info session will review funding opportunities with the program, submission requirements and review processes, and tips for applying. Find more information and register.

  • The Governor's Conference on the Future of Water in Kansas is November 8-9 at the Manhattan Hilton Garden Inn. Registration is limited and has sold out in previous years. Find more information and register.

Research Connections: Still time to register!
Research Connections is November 7. Limited space remains available, but there's still time to register!

Join your K-State colleagues from 3:00 to 5:00 p.m. at the K-State Alumni Center Banquet Room to learn what others on campus are doing, explore resources, and meet possible collaborators.
Industry collaboration web portal
Our new Industry Collaboration web portal gathers information for companies, faculty, and others who are looking to engage with K-State for research or technology transfer.

We invite you to take a look at the site to find advice on everything from establishing a university-industry research relationship to reporting an invention and understanding the commercialization process. Let us know what's missing at researchweekly@ksu.edu .
Agency news and trending topics
Legislators and the public are often skeptical that higher-education tax dollars are being put to good use. Colleges see it as more important than ever, then, for academics to be able to explain their research in lively, accessible ways. ... Easier said than done, though. Many academics have spent their careers in the singular pursuit of an idea or topic that they’ve typically written about at length for clusters of like-minded peers in their field. They see communicating to a broad audience as rife with pitfalls. Some of those are real: It can be tricky to simplify complicated subject matter. Some are assumed, and damaging to academe: Talking to the public is a waste of time.

International Education Week, November 13-17, is an opportunity to celebrate the benefits of international education and exchange worldwide. This joint initiative of the U.S. Department of State and the U.S. Department of Education is part of our efforts to promote programs that prepare Americans for a global environment and attract future leaders from abroad to study, learn, and exchange experiences.

A panel of renowned scientists and dancers are scoring the finalists on their artistic and scientific merits. The winners of each of the four categories will receive cash prizes totaling $2,500. The overall winner will head to Austin to screen their dance at the annual AAAS meeting in February 2018. We also want to know what you think! Between now and 11:59 p.m. Eastern Daylight Time on 30 October, vote for the Audience Favorite award. Cancan you decide?

A new Pew Research Center report addresses questions about whether the next decade will bring a reduction in false and misleading narratives online.

An artificial intelligence (AI) program from Google-owned company DeepMind has reached superhuman level at the strategy game Go — without learning from any human moves. This ability to self-train without human input is a crucial step towards the dream of creating a general AI that can tackle any task. In the nearer-term, though, it could enable programs to take on scientific challenges such as protein folding or materials research, said DeepMind chief executive Demis Hassabis at a press briefing. “We’re quite excited because we think this is now good enough to make some real progress on some real problems.”

Researchers have caught their best glimpse yet into the origins of photosynthesis, one of nature’s most momentous innovations. By taking near-atomic, high-resolution X-ray images of proteins from primitive bacteria, investigators at Arizona State University and Pennsylvania State University have extrapolated what the earliest version of photosynthesis might have looked like nearly 3.5 billion years ago. If they are right, their findings could rewrite the evolutionary history of the process that life uses to convert sunlight into chemical energy.
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