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OR Research Units

The Office of Research promotes interdisciplinary research by overseeing organized research units, special research programs and research instruments & central facilities listed below.


Organized Research Units


Special Research Programs


Research Instruments and Central Facilities


Organized Research Units

Air Quality Research Center

The Air Quality Research Center provides support for teams of collaborative researchers to conduct scientific, engineering, health, social and economic research that educates and informs planning and regulations for air quality and climate change.  The center educates and informs through conferences, outreach, scholarly publications and training grants.

Director: Anthony S. Wexler
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Bodega Marine Laboratory

The Bodega Marine Laboratory is dedicated to understanding environmental processes at the land-sea interface on California’s North Coast – an area known for the productivity and diversity of its marine and terrestrial ecosystems. Through innovative research programs and teaching initiatives, the Bodega Marine Laboratory will lead the way to the multi-disciplinary scientific understanding required to solve complex environmental problems on the marine and terrestrial sides of the tideline in Northern California

Director: Gary N. Cherr
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California National Primate Research Center

The California National Primate Research Center is a part of the National Primate Research Centers Program and is dedicated to improving human and animal health. Research projects conducted at the primate center are contributing in substantial ways to health care and are developing a better understanding of, and new treatments for, a wide range of human health problems including asthma, HIV/AIDS, childhood illnesses, Alzheimer’s disease, and environmental toxins that impact our health.

Director: Peter Barry
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Comprehensive Cancer Center

In 2002, the UC Davis Comprehensive Cancer Center became the nation's 61st National Cancer Institute center. According to the NCI, its designated centers "are the major sources of new knowledge relating to the nature of cancer and of new and more effective approaches to prevention, diagnosis and therapy."

Director: Ralph deVere White
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Center for Healthcare Policy and Research

The Center for Healthcare Policy and Research facilitates research activities in the areas of health policy, healthcare delivery, quality, and comparative effectiveness.  The center is a valuable resource to researchers in these areas who need assistance in grants development, project implementation and management, or financial administration.

Director: Joy Melnikow
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Crocker Nuclear Laboratory

The unique capabilities of the 76-inch isochronous cyclotron and related facilities at Crocker Nuclear Laboratory are utilized by scientists and engineers from private industry, universities and government agencies.  Research programs at Crocker include: identification of particulate pollutants and the mechanism by which they are transported; radiation effects on semi-conductors; development of alternatives to insecticides, pesticides and conventional forms of water treatment; and retinal melanoma treatment facility.

Director: Anthony S. Wexler
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Institute of Governmental Affairs

The Institute of Governmental Affairs supports social science research, graduate student training, public affairs programming, and outreach activities at UC Davis. The institute houses a number of formal research programs and enjoys the participation of faculty from a number of departments across the campus.

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Institute of Transportation Studies

The Institute of Transportation Studies at UC Davis is a multi-faceted, internationally recognized program.  The institute assembles teams of academic faculty, research faculty and graduate students to collaborate on research projects. These projects are organized within three primary research areas: travel behavior and transportation systems modeling; environmental vehicle technologies; and climate change, air quality and other environmental impacts.

Director: Daniel Sperling
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John Muir Institute of the Environment

The John Muir Institute of the Environment supports innovation and discovery aimed at solving real-world environmental problems. The institute’s faculty are committed to strengthening the scientific foundation for environmental decision making through collective entrepreneurship, a team-oriented approach that recognizes the complexities of environmental problems and the societal context in which they occur.

Director: Mark Schwartz
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Program in International and Community Nutrition

The Program in International and Community Nutrition coordinates research and training activities concerning human nutrition problems of low-income countries, and of ethnic minorities and disadvantaged groups in the United States.  The program provides technical assistance to national governments and international agencies concerned with food and nutrition policies of developing countries.

Director: Kathryn G. Dewey
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Special Research Programs

Biotechnology Program

The Biotechnology Program is the administrative home for the DEB (Designated Emphasis in Biotechnology) and ADP (Advanced Degree for Corporate Employees) graduate programs, NSF and NIH Biotechnology PhD Training Grants and links academia to biotechnology industries and government agencies.

Director: Judith A. Kjelstrom
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Center for Advanced Laboratory Fusion Science and Engineering

The Center for Advanced Laboratory Fusion Science and Engineering focuses on research and education relating to fusion energy, encompassing topics that cut across numerous engineering, science, and policy disciplines, and addressing plasma accelerators, high energy particle accelerators, plasma diagnostics, advanced computing, advanced materials, and energy policy.

Co-Director: N.C. Luhmann, Jr. and David Hwang
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Center for Biophotonics Science and Technology

The Center for Biophotonics Science and Technology advances research, development, and application of new optical/photonic tools and technology in medicine and the life sciences.

Director: Kit Lam
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Center for Information Technology Research in the Interest of Society

The Center for Information Technology Research in the Interest of Society (CITRIS) creates information technology solutions for many of our most pressing social, environmental, and health care problems.  CITRIS facilitates partnerships and collaborations among more than 300 faculty members and thousands of students from numerous departments at four University of California campuses (Berkeley, Davis, Merced, and Santa Cruz) with industrial researchers from over 60 corporations.

Director: Nina Amenta
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Energy Institute

One of the 21st century’s biggest challenges is transitioning to a sustainable energy future. The UC Davis Energy Institute combines research, education, and outreach programs in energy science, technology, management, and policy to help facilitate this transition and provide new energy solutions.

Interim Director: Daniel Sperling
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Policy Institute for Energy, Environment and the Economy

The Policy Institute for Energy, Environment and the Economy leverages world-class university expertise and engages policy makers and stakeholders to identify policy and research priorities, synthesize existing knowledge, and deliver timely and relevant information to the policy process. The institute focuses on subjects where UC Davis has world-class expertise including: sustainable mobility, clean energy, energy and water efficiency, climate, agriculture, and ecology, including air and water quality.

Executive Director: Anthony Eggert
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Research Instruments and Central Facilities

Campus Mass Spectrometry Facilities

The Campus Mass Spectrometry Facilities provides open access, high quality, and cost-effective mass spectrometry services for the entire UC Davis community. The facility is focused on providing quality resources in mass spectrometry to meet the research needs of the campus, in line with the university's service mission as an academic institution.

Director: Julie Leary
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Controlled Environment Facility

The Controlled Environment Facility consists of 151 plant growth chambers at two locations.  Chamber controls include light intensity, temperature, relative humidity, photoperiod and plant irrigation systems.  The facility contains many specialized units, such as a dew chamber for virus and pathogen inoculation, 15 chambers that control CO2 levels within the chamber up to 2500 parts per million, 1 chamber is available for low temperature [-10C]: experiments, 1 chamber with a M10 fluorescent / incandescent lamp canopy and another chamber is equipped with a chemical air drier for low humidity studies.

Director: William J. Lucas
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Interdisciplinary Center for Plasma Mass Spectrometry

The Interdisciplinary Center for Plasma Mass Spectrometry is a facility for trace element and isotope analyses with inductively coupled plasma-mass spectrometry (ICP-MS). The facility is comprised of two laboratories: Quadrupole ICP-MS/Laser Ablation instrumentation & Multiple Collection (MC) ICP-MS/Laser Ablation instrumentation.

Director: Charles E. Lesher
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McClellan Nuclear Research Center

The McClellan Nuclear Research Center operates a 2 MW TRIGA type nuclear reactor and was originally developed by the US Air Force to detect low-level corrosion and hidden defects in aircraft structures using neutron radiography. Since then, services at the center have expanded to include computer tomography (three-dimensional neutron radiography), silicon doping, isotope production, neutron activation analysis, and radiation effects testing.

Director: Barry M. Klein
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Nuclear Magnetic Resonance Facility

The Nuclear Magnetic Resonance Facility provides qualified researchers in the biological, medical, and physical sciences access to state-of-the-art instrumentation for spectroscopy and imaging. At present the facility operates 10 spectrometers of varying purposes and capabilities. All of the spectrometers are multinuclear and a large variety of liquids, solids, surface, and imaging coils are available for use.

Director: Gary M. Smith
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