The College of Arts and Sciences (A&S) at The University of New Mexico recently hosted its inaugural “Data-to-Knowledge” Symposium at the UNM Sevilleta Field Station, bringing together research-active faculty from across various disciplines in the college to discuss their work and opportunities for future collaborations.  

The symposium focused on introducing the new Physics & Astronomy and Interdisciplinary Science (PAIS) center/facility/building, brainstorming about current and future research, stimulating conversation across the interdisciplinary research community and scoping ideas about future collaborative grant proposals at UNM.

Participants included faculty from Africana Studies, Anthropology, Biology, Earth and Planetary Sciences, Earth Data Analysis Center, Economics, Geography, Mathematics and Statistics, Sociology, and Physics and Astronomy.

Throughout the day, A&S faculty presented their research questions, ideas and capabilities in seven minute “lightning talks”, stimulating conversations about UNM’s capabilities, resources and direction. Faculty Research Development Director Mary Jo Daniel facilitated the conversations between the faculty, which generated ideas for future interdisciplinary research ventures that align with funding agency priorities.

Faculty Research Development Director Mary Jo Daniel
Faculty Research Development Director Mary Jo Daniel facilitates conversations amongst the faculty. 

“Collaboration is essential for future research efforts. The wonderfully creative and ambitious research programs represented during the symposium are only a fraction of UNM’s research,” said Daniel. “This is just the beginning… we need to continue the conversations and keep building relationships across the campus to promote a collaborative research culture.”

A&S Associate Dean for Research Tom Turner noted, “this was a fantastic opportunity to learn more about the important work A&S faculty are carrying out in the college. Construction of PAIS creates an opportune moment to start the conversation about how to draw these efforts together to plan strategically for future interdisciplinary and collaborative work. 

"The Data-to-Knowledge Symposium brings us one step closer to breaking down the disciplinary silos of research. I hope to continue these discussions and look forward to propelling an enriching research environment at UNM.”