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Research Themes

UC Davis provides knowledge worldwide with governments, industry, foundations, NGOs and others to address issues, find solutions and develop new technologies. Whatever your need, the Office of Research can connect you to the right resource.

  • Innovating at the Intersection

    Innovating at the Intersection

    Our world is complex, and when breakthroughs occur, they usually happen at the intersections of multiple academic disciplines. UC Davis is noted for its expertise in food, water, health, society, energy and the environment—topics that converge to generate some of the most compelling and complex issues of our times.

    From UC Davis’ earliest days, faculty and students developed a culture of collaboration to generate new discoveries across diverse areas of inquiry. Today, as the university enters its second century, that collaborative culture flourishes, supported by formal structures that foster an academic environment dedicated to understanding and addressing some of the greatest challenges faced in California and across the globe.


    UC Davis has worked to improve agriculture for more than a century, providing global leadership in sustainable farming practices, crop and animal health, food security and safety, and international food economics issues. That expertise benefits our global society by providing agricultural education and innovation to students, farmers, scientists and policymakers worldwide.


    Humans need clean water to survive, and it serves as a resource for seafood, energy production, irrigation, transportation and other uses. UC Davis has expertise in every aspect of water use and conservation, from understanding watersheds, efficiency in usage, agricultural application, law, aquatic habitat, and large scale water systems. Our faculty understand the complexities of water and provide solutions that balance the demands placed on this critical natural resource.


    In order for us to advance as humans, we must understand ourselves and provide informed, beneficial leadership in society and culture. Cultural expressions, psychological and societal studies, and historical inquiry offer platforms for advancing understanding and exchanging important ideas. UC Davis, which has wellknown academic programs across the spectrum of the arts, humanities and sciences, extends its expertise beyond the classroom in a way that positively impacts lives beyond the university’s walls.


    UC Davis is a global leader in health research, care, technology and public service. Recent initiatives include ensuring the delivery of life-saving nutrition to children and mothers in developing countries; finding ways to stop global pandemics; developing innovative biotechnology; and treating animals affected by environmental catastrophes. The university’s effectiveness is grounded in interdisciplinary research across the UC Davis Health System, School of Veterinary Medicine, College of Biological Sciences, departments of Biomedical Engineering and Nutrition, and various other university entities.


    Through the UC Davis Energy Institute, the Institute of Transportation Studies, the nation’s only university-based Energy Efficiency Center, and other programs, UC Davis brings together scholars, industry and advocates to find sustainable sources of energy while also finding ways to increase conservation. Combining its comprehensive academic expertise with its Center for Entrepreneurship and Office of Research, UC Davis is driving new inventions and services from the lab to the marketplace, and helping to make northern California a hub for clean technology.


    With the leadership of nationally recognized academic programs, UC Davis addresses the full range of environmental challenges, including biodiversity and conservation, land use, air and water quality, climate change and the intersection of environmental and human health. The university’s outreach and leadership, through the John Muir Institute of the Environment and stewardship of Lake Tahoe and other natural areas, ensures its local and global engagement in issues of importance to everyone on Earth.