Division of Research
Institutes and centers are established to carry out research, service and instructional activities which supplement and extend programs of instruction and research offered by Florida Atlantic University. FAU’s state centers and institutes typically have a state-wide mission, include two or more state universities, have been approved by the Florida Board of Governors and have an advisory board with membership. FAU’s University centers and institutes follow the same protocols as state centers but do not necessarily carry out a state-wide mission and are self-supporting.
The following are FAU’s state and University centers and institutes:
Adams Center for Entrepreneurship
The Adams Center for Entrepreneurship in the College of Business recognizes the importance of research in the academic fields regarding entrepreneurship. The center works with FAU faculty with entrepreneurship interests and assists them with conducting and publishing significant research.
Director, Roland Kidwell
Carl DeSantis Business and Economics Center
The Carl DeSantis Business and Economics Center for Motion Picture Industry Studies, a unique "think tank," was established in 1997 at Florida Atlantic University's College of Business, and its goal is to focus on the business and economics of the film industry by serving as an incubator for ideas, a forum for discussion, and a center for scholarly activity in the field. The Center maintains a Los Angeles-based National Advisory Board which includes a number of prominent industry leaders, filmmakers and studio executives. Its founding chairman was director Robert Wise.
Center of Acoustics and Vibrations
The Center of Acoustics and Vibrations in the College of Engineering and Computer Science specializes in underwater acoustics, sonar technology, structural acoustics and vibration, aero-acoustics and hydro-acoustics. Research support in these areas is currently provided by the National Science Foundation, the Office of Naval Research, The Naval Surface Warfare Center, The Naval Underwater Systems Center, the Naval Research Laboratory and NASA.
Director, Stewart Glegg
Center for Advancement of Distance Education Technologies
The Center for Advancement of Distance Education Technologies in the College of Engineering and Computer Science conducts research and develops new and innovative technologies to create complete remote distance educational system solutions for all disciplines of learning. Research at the center is conducted with the objective of stimulating and enhancing all domains of learning skills in students and making “virtual” education more accessible.
Director, Bassem Al-Halabi
Center for Autism and Related Disabilities
The FAU Center for Autism and Related Disabilities (CARD) provides expert consulting, training and support, at no charge, for people with autism and related disabilities, their families and the professionals serving them. FAU CARD provides free services to people with autism and related disabilities as well as their families and professionals.
Director, Maryellen Quinn-Lunny
Center for Biomedical and Materials Physics (CBAMP)
The Center for Biomedical and Materials Physics (CBAMP) in the Charles E. Schmidt College of Science was established in 1989 and provides a focus for collaborations to facilitate studies in biomedical physics as well as soft and hard materials physics. Biomedical Physics concentrates on biomedical phenomena using physics methods. Materials Physics applies fundamental Condensed Matter physics concepts to complex and multiphase media, including materials of technological and biological interest.
Director, Theodora Leventouri
Center for Complex Systems and Brain Sciences
The Center for Complex Systems and Brain Sciences in the Charles E. Schmidt College of Science brings together scientists from different backgrounds including laboratory biologists, psychologists, applied mathematicians and theoretical physicists. The center features state-of-the-art research facilities for studying brain anatomy, neural growth and development, cellular electrophysiology, motor and sensory function, high resolution EEG, and computational neuroscience. There are also extensive imaging facilities including structural and functional magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) available in close proximity to the center. Various research and training programs at the center blend emerging concepts from complex dynamic systems with experimental techniques at the molecular, cellular, behavioral and cognitive levels in brain sciences.
Director, Steven L. Bressler
Center for Cryptology and Information Security
The Center for Cryptology and Information Security in the Charles E. Schmidt College of Science is focused on innovative and cutting-edge research in cryptology and other related areas of information security. The center also educates and trains research students and information technology professionals, and promotes collaboration with information technology industries within the region and with federal and state government departments in the areas of information security. The center was established in 2003 with funding provided by a federal earmark, and is founded on the unique strengths of cryptology specialists in the Department of Mathematical Sciences at FAU. The center is also affiliated with the InternetCoast Institute.
Director, Rainer Steinwandt
Center for Economic Education
The Center for Economic Education in the College of Business provides various resources and workshops related to economics and personal finance. The various workshops are designed to assist teachers of all subjects in grades 9-12, teachers who teach personal finance and economics in grades 6 to 12 and introduction of basic economics to develop curriculums for use in the K to 5 classroom. The center also provides stock market simulations.
Director, William Bosshardt
Center of Excellence in Biomedical and Marine Biotechnology
Established in 2003, FAU’s Center of Excellence in Biomedical and Marine Biotechnology was selected by Florida’s Emerging Technology Commission as one of three centers in the state to receive $10 million. Since receiving the initial funding for the center, FAU has secured an additional $26 million from other sources including federal and private research grants. As a result, the center has emerged as an academic and industry partnership combining expertise in ocean engineering, marine biotechnology, functional genomics, proteomics and bioinformatics. Researchers, scientists and students at the center are designing technologies to explore the sea, discovering new medicines from the sea and developing new therapeutics to combat agents of bioterrorism. The center is also contributing to Florida’s economic growth by creating spin-off companies and training a highly skilled biotechnology workforce.
Director, Amy Wright
Center for Holocaust & Human Rights Education
The Center for Holocaust & Human Rights Educationr in the College of Education provides cutting-edge training and resources for teachers involved in Holocaust and genocide education. The center offers workshops, advanced seminars and summer institutes for K-12 teachers working in the fields of history, arts, languages, religion, science, technology, politics and social studies. The center serves all schools in Broward, Palm Beach, Martin, St. Lucie, Indian River, Glades and Okeechobee counties. The center also prepares teachers on how to implement lessons that are devised to stimulate discussions on ethics, individual responsibility, nonviolence, and conflict resolution.
Interim Director, Linda Medvin
Center for Hydrodynamics and Physical Oceanography
The Center for Hydrodynamics and Physical Oceanography in the College of Engineering and Computer Science conducts research in areas including ocean modeling, flow measurement and computational fluid dynamics involving near shore processes, nonlinear wave mechanics, turbulent flow, and coherent vortex dynamics. Current research activities include consideration of boundary layer, wake and shear flows, air-sea interaction and internal waves, wave-body interaction, sensor and sensor-platform development, flow control, drag reduction, sediment transport and hydro-acoustics. Research funding for the center is supported by federal and state agencies including the National Science Foundation and the Office of Naval Research.
Director, Palaniswamy Ananthakrishnan
Center for Infrastructure and Constructed Facilities
Research at the Center for Infrastructure and Constructed Facilities in the College of Engineering and Computer Science is sponsored by state, federal and private agencies. The center’s areas of interest include strength determination of existing bridges, repair and retrofitting, high strength composites applications to new and existing structurally deficient structures, artificial intelligence applications to engineering structures (analysis and design), adaptive control, and smart materials and structures. Interdisciplinary research projects at the center are conducted by faculty researchers and include areas such as computer science, mechanical engineering, and electrical engineering.
Director, Madasamy Arockiasamy
Center for Intermodal Transportation Safety and Security
The Center for Intermodal Transportation Safety and Security is a state university system-wide project led by FAU and designed to address the potential threat of terrorism affecting the safety and general economic welfare of Florida and its transportation-based infrastructure. The center’s primary mission is to support initiatives by the state to protect and encourage the economic vitality of Florida by preventing both terrorism and transportation gridlock, which is estimated to be costing the nation nearly $500 billion annually. This project includes Florida's 1,197-mile coastline and existing maritime facilities, airspace and airports, telecommunications, surface transportation and subsurface systems such as pipelines. The center brings together four universities— FAU, Florida International University, the University of Central Florida and the University of South Florida—in the areas of transportation and urban planning, architecture, engineering, computer and information science and technology, criminology and public administration.
Director, Panagiotis Scarlatos
Center for Marine Materials
Focused on marine corrosion education and research, the Center for Marine Materials in the College of Engineering and Computer Science is working in the areas of corrosion, materials science and energy storage. Located within FAU’s Department of Ocean Engineering, the center’s facilities include an on-campus materials laboratory and an ocean-side marine corrosion laboratory, where flowing natural seawater is available.
Director, Richard Granata
Center for Marine Structures and Geotechniques
The Center for Marine Structures and Geotechniques is one of the organized research units within FAU’s Department of Ocean Engineering. Research areas include marine structures interfaced with marine materials, structures, geotechnical engineering and infrastructure of marine constructed facilities. Past and current areas of the center’s research initiatives encompass broad aspects of marine concrete durability, knowledge-based expert systems applied to structures, transportation structures, advanced high-strength composites, structural dynamics, stochastic modeling of earthquakes, earth structures, foundation scour, sediment transport mechanics, and analysis of environmental systems.
Director, Dronnadula Reddy
Center for Molecular Biology and Biotechnology
The Center for Molecular Biology and Biotechnology in the Charles E. Schmidt College of Science is committed to developing research and training programs in molecular biology and biotechnology and serves as a link between FAU and other institutions and industries in this field. Established in 1997, the center’s primary goals have been to create a strong base in molecular biology, functional genomics and related fields; maintain cutting-edge research; bring together research scientists from FAU, as well as distinguished scientists world-wide; and train students in this discipline to prepare them for careers in the pharmaceutical and biotechnology industries. Understanding life from its molecular foundation complements the practice of medicine. Some of the most complex problems in biology, ranging from how cells react to their environment to understanding memory, learning and aging, are being addressed at the center. The center also plays an important role in attracting start-up and existing biotechnology companies to South Florida and provides a vital link to FAU’s biomedical science program and the local medical community.
Director, Greg Fields, Ph.D.
Center for Rare and Genetic Neurological Diseases
The Center for Rare and Genetic Neurological Diseases in the Charles E. Schmidt College of Science is working to coordinate and provide support to the vast array of existing and emerging expertise and resources that are focused on combating rare and genetic neurological diseases. Goals of the center include supporting education programs for the public and for physicians to increase awareness of genetic diseases and the need for and availability of testing for many of these disorders, supporting research designed to improve genetic testing, discovering ways to treat, cure and ultimately prevent genetic disorders, and supporting graduate students in the areas of medical genetics and counseling.
Director, Rodney Murphey
Center for Services Marketing and Management
The Center for Services Marketing & Management in the College of Business was founded in 1991 with the mission of encouraging scholarly interest in the field of services marketing. The center’s goals include knowledge development and knowledge dissemination in the fast-growing field of services marketing. The center is committed to encouraging academic research and scholarship in the field of services marketing and management. At the same time, the center is focused on educating FAU faculty and students on the various critical and topical issues in services marketing and management and serving the training and workforce development needs of area businesses.
Director, Gopalkrishnan R. Iyer
The Center for the Study of Values and Violence after Auschwitz
The Center for the Study of Values and Violence after Auschwitz in the Dorothy F. Schmidt College of Arts and Letters is focused on stimulating dialogues that explore and define issues of values and violence that influence today’s society. Using the contemporary lessons and legacies of the Holocaust, the center is defining ethical and moral guidelines to help strengthen leadership skills, facilitate communication among multi-ethnic cultures, and create greater harmony community-wide. The center's policy think tank, composed of scholars from a variety of disciplines, is focused on translating the lessons of the Holocaust into a coherent series of works—books, monographs and articles— that assist government officials, administrators, and educators in moving the world away from genocidal modes of thought and action.
Director, Alan Berger
Center for Systems Integration
The Center for Systems Integration in the College of Engineering and Computer Science provides multi-disciplinary research, teaching and training that are helping to establish a research and development infrastructure for South Florida. The center is focused on emerging technologies for real-time, embedded system modeling, co-design, co-verification and integration. The center is also committed to providing a collaborative environment that enhances individual performance and rewards excellence for both university and industry participants.
Director, Ravi Shankar
Center for Women, Gender & Sexuality Studies
The Center for Women, Gender & Sexuality Studies at Florida Atlantic University is a strong interdisciplinary program with nationally and internationally known faculty from a variety of disciplines Students receive credit for courses in fields such as anthropology, English, criminal justice, communication, history, languages and linguistics, literature, nursing, political science, sociology, and of course, women's studies. The underlying goal of Women's Studies is to understand the broad range of women's experiences that reflect class, race, ethnicity, disability, sexual orientation, age, and the interconnections that shape these experiences in specific ways. The programs prepare students to think critically about the political, social, economic, and historical forces that shape women's lives, along with women's responses through activism and advocacy. We welcome students who are interested in these issues.
Acting Director, Barclay Barrios
Child Welfare Institute
Child welfare is a major concern at the local, state and national levels. The Child Welfare Institute in the College for Design and Social Inquiry is committed to providing child welfare education, training, social services and research within the state of Florida. Goals and objectives of the institute include providing increased access to higher education, meeting statewide professional and workforce needs, building world-class academic programs and research capability as well as meeting the various needs of the community.
Director, Heather Thompson, Ph.D.
Christine E. Lynn Center for Caring
The Christine E. Lynn Center for Caring in the Christine E. Lynn College of Nursing is focused on humanizing care through the integration of teaching, research and service. The first major project of the center is its "Nursing through Faith Communities" program. The center is focused on understanding the health care needs of individuals and families within faith-based communities and utilizes focus groups, surveys and interviews to gather and process vital information.
Co-directors, Patricia Liehr and Marlaine Smith
Community Justice Institute
The Community Justice Institute in the College for Design and Social Inquiry is a research center focused on enhancing public and community safety. The center’s main objective is to serve as a conduit for local, state and national research, and to provide education, training and technical assistance for citizen and neighborhood groups focused on initiatives in prevention, sanctioning, offender reintegration and victim restoration. Many of these initiatives include community policing, citizen sanctioning panels, community service, family group conferencing, victim-offender dialogue, youth development, and mentoring service learning initiatives.
Director, Gordon Bazemore
The Disability Center
In 2006, SAF joined with FAU’s Christine E. Lynn College of Nursing to open The Disability Center, a designated center of excellence in the State of Florida university system. Through education programs, services and advocacy, the Center serves as a resource to persons with disabilities, their families, health care professionals and the community. The Center’s faculty research focuses on advancing opportunities for all people with disabilities to live life independently. Disabilities served include visual, hearing, cognitive and physical disabilities. In addition, the Center conducts practical research focused on program delivery, training and the development of new assistive technology products and services for persons with disabilities so that those affected may lead stronger and more productive lives.
Ernest O. Melby Community Education Center
The Ernest O. Melby Community Education Center in the College of Education was founded in 1967. During its history, the center has played an important role in the development of creative and innovative solutions to many of the issues and problems that face communities. This role has been accomplished through the sponsorship of conferences and workshops, graduate courses, provision of consultant services, facilitation of interagency efforts, and the development and distribution of printed materials. The center is playing an active role in helping to address the issues that are dramatically impacting Florida and its respective communities including youth at-risk, school-age child care, crime, health and education.
Florida Center for Environmental Studies
Located on FAU's John D. MacArthur Campus in Jupiter, the Florida Center for Environmental Studies in the Charles E. Schmidt College of Science represents the ten state universities including FAU and four major, private universities. The center serves as a facilitator and coordinator of research and training related to the environment and as a locus for environmental information. Grounding its activities in the Florida sub-tropical environment, the center’s mandate encompasses global tropical and sub-tropical environments and issues related to water dominated ecosystems.
Director, Dr. Colin Polsky
Institute for Ocean & Systems Engineering - SeaTech
FAU’s SeaTech provides easy access to the ocean and is located on eight acres of land between the Atlantic Ocean and the Intracoastal water-way in Dania Beach, Florida. Established in 1997, the Institute is part of FAU’s Department of Ocean and Mechanical Engineering in the College of Engineering and Computer Science and includes 11 world-class faculty members, 27 engineers and technicians, and 40 graduate students who are engaged in federal and industry sponsored ocean engineering research and technology development in the areas of acoustics, marine vehicles, hydrodynamics and physical oceanography, marine materials and nano-composites. The institute builds on and complements the academic programs of FAU’s Department of Ocean and Mechanical Engineering and provides the means for technology advancement, collaboration with academia, industry and government, and the commercialization of research products to applications. The institute has received federal funding for research and development in the areas of durability of composite materials, coastline security technology, harnessing ocean energy, a program under a national naval responsibility initiative for training and development of a new generation of workforce for naval laboratories, and most recently for seabasing. The institute’s research is in the areas of underwater acoustics, marine materials and corrosion, ocean structures, hydrodynamics, and the newest addition, marine vehicles.
Director, Manhar Dhanak
Intensive English Institute
The Intensive English Institute, part of FAU’s Lifelong Learning program, provides instruction in all areas of the English language for international students, scholars and professionals. English is taught for business, career development or to prepare a student for study at an American university. Students receive instruction in listening comprehension, grammar, reading, writing and composition, vocabulary development, conversation and multi-cultural understanding.
Coordinator, Victoria Navarrete
International Center for the Advancement of Political Communication and Argumentation
The purpose of the Center is to study forms of political communication and argument in their natural settings and to discover practical applications of existing theory. Public discourse of this type is an essential element of the democratic process, and, as such, is part of the political tradition of the Western democracies and most pluralist societies. The process of encouraging democratic reform in previously authoritarian states such as Russia and the former Soviet Republics necessarily involves the promotion of similar traditions of public discourse. Part of the mission of this center will be to provide practical training in argumentation and communication theory in a real-life laboratory and to discover which elements of those theories are culture-specific and which are culture-invariant.
Executive Director, David Cratis Williams
Louis and Anne Green Memory and Wellness Center
A unique partnership of FAU’s Christine E. Lynn College of Nursing and Boca Raton Regional Hospital, the Memory and Wellness Center is dedicated to addressing the complex problems of memory loss and aging through research and education programs, as well as the provision of care. The center is developing and offering a comprehensive array of innovative services and therapeutic programs designed to meet the needs of individuals with memory problems and for their families.
Director, Dr. María Ordóñez
Pine Jog Environmental Research Center
Pine Jog is an environmental education center with the purpose of developing, providing and modeling environmental education programs which foster an awareness and appreciation of the natural world, promote an understanding of ecological concepts and instill a sense of stewardship toward the Earth and all its inhabitants. Pine Jog is a unit of the College of Education of Florida Atlantic University. Florida Atlantic University provides administrative support and direct support services for operation and maintenance while Pine Jog’s Board of directors is responsible for policy development, strategic planning, financial monitoring, and fundraising to support the annual budget of $1.2 million. In addition to the Board of Directors, Pine Jog enlists the assistance of community leaders through the Business Advisory Council and the Education Advisory Council.
Executive Director, Ray Coleman
Public Procurement Research Center
The Public Procurement Research Center in the College for Design and Social Inquiry was established to assist the National Institute of Governmental Purchasing in providing research, education, training, technical assistance, and guidance and support for developing relevant publications. Established in 1999, the center’s strategic plan includes articulating and expanding its services to the more than 500,000 government procurement professionals in the U.S. and abroad.
Director, Cliff McCue
Quantum Foundation Center for Innovation in School and Community Well-being
Through Palm Beach County’s public school system, the Quantum Foundation Center for Innovation in School and Community Well-being in the Christine E. Lynn College of Nursing provides health care for children and families to assist the county’s underserved communities. The center also provides practice sites for undergraduate and graduate students studying nursing, social work and other practice disciplines. In addition, the center provides opportunities for faculty and student researchers as well as industry leaders in matters regarding health policy development. Services at the center are focused on promoting well-being and early intervention, and integrate practice, education, research and development in community settings.
Director, Kathleen Valentine
Southeast National Marine Renewable Energy Center (SNMREC)
The Southeast National Marine Renewable Energy Centers (SNMREC) at Florida Atlantic University was founded with a $5M award from the State of Florida in January 2007, and was established to research, design, develop, implement and test ocean energy technologies that are cost-competitive with existing power technologies. SNMREC is a partnership created to further the assessment of hydrokinetic and thermal ocean-energy resources off the east coast of Florida, and to advance the development of those resources for commercial-scale electrical power production. SNMREC’s programs are geared to bridge the gap between concept and implementation of ocean-energy development. Researchers at the SNMREC are performing several research projects, including developing a 20-kW turbine, and have also deployed instrumentation to evaluate the state's ocean energy resources in the Gulf Stream. Significant efforts have been expended by the SNMREC to engage and assist regulatory agencies in developing rule making in order to define policy, protocol and capability to test and evaluate the feasibility of ocean energy. As a result, the SNMREC’s approach to ocean energy research and technology demonstration/ validation is a total system – environment, ecology, resource and energy conversion. An undertaking of this size and complexity engages expertise and knowledge across and beyond FAU to build the capability, infrastructure, expertise and strategic partnerships needed to develop and deploy commercially-viable ocean energy systems.
Director, Gabriel Alsenas
The Teaching and Leadership Center
The Teaching and Leadership Center is a joint collaborative initiative of FAU, Broward Community College and the School Board of Broward County in an effort to meet the challenges of attracting, developing and retaining qualified and competent educators for the schools within these communities. The center’s goals include expanding the pool of mid-career professionals and recent college graduates to teach in Broward County's high- need schools. This particular project streamlines the district's hiring, placement and new staff support systems for alternative certification candidates by creating a streamlined one stop center for all alternative candidates seeking information, training and support. The center is demonstrating promising results by addressing gaps identified by data on the supply and demand for teachers.
Director, Elisa Calabrese
Weppner Center for Civic Engagement
The Mission of the Weppner Center for Civic Engagement & Service is to develop partnerships between the University and community by providing service opportunities to faculty, staff and students; and to promote the link between curriculum and service fostering civic awareness. The goal of the CCES is to inspire in all a greater appreciation for community service and the desire to continue working for the community beyond the college years. As a conduit between volunteers and outside organizations, we aim to offer relevant service opportunities and guidance to encourage compassion.
Director, Nori Carter