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Organized Research Units

  • An Organized Research Unit (ORU) is an academic unit established by the University to provide a supportive infrastructure for interdisciplinary research complementary to the academic goals of departments of instruction and research and typically involve faculty from two or more Schools. An ORU must be complementary to the academic goals of the University, but does not have jurisdiction over courses or curricula and cannot offer formal courses or make faculty appointments. ORU Directors report to the Vice Chancellor for Research.

    * denotes provisional ORU status (PrORU)


    ORU Guidelines
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      Atmospheric Integrated Research at UCI (AirUCI)

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      Atmospheric Integrated Research at UCI (AirUCI)

      Atmospheric Integrated Research at UCI - known as AirUCI - is an ORU addressing the urgent challenges we face in air and water quality, human health, climate change, as well as green technology through the integration of research, education, and outreach.
      • Co-Director(s):
        Barbara Finlayson-Pitts and Sergey Nizkorodov
      • Contact:
        Christine Sepulveda | chrissep@uci.edu | 949-824-8102


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      Cancer Research Institute (CRI)

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      Cancer Research Institute (CRI)

      The UCI Cancer Research Institute (CRI) is an organized research unit dedicated to basic cancer research.


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      Center for Complex Biological Systems

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      Center for Complex Biological Systems

      The Center for Complex Biological Systems (CCBS) at the University of California Irvine aims to promote research, education and outreach in Systems Biology by integrating expertise and perspectives from diverse scientific fields to develop a deeper understanding of biological processes.


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      Center for Embedded and Cyber-physical Systems (CECS)

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      Center for Embedded and Cyber-physical Systems (CECS)

      The purpose of the Center for Embedded and Cyber-physical Systems - also known as CECS - is to conduct leading-edge interdisciplinary research in embedded systems, emphasizing automotive, communications and medical applications, and promote technology and knowledge transfer for the benefit of the individual and society.


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      Center for Population, Inequality and Policy (CPIP)*

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      Center for Population, Inequality and Policy (CPIP)*

      Growing inequality is among the most pressing challenges in many parts of the world including the United States.  The Center for Population, Inequality, and Policy (a provisional ORU) at UCI will bring together faculty from many disciplines to work together to develop deeper understanding of various aspects of this topic in an increasingly diverse population, and to study public policy interventions that would move society towards shared prosperity and well-being.
      • Co-Director(s):
        Tim Allen Bruckner and David Neumark
      • Contact:
        Marilu Daum | daumm@uci.edu | (949) 824-2566


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      Center for the Neurobiology of Learning and Memory

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      Center for the Neurobiology of Learning and Memory

      The Center for the Neurobiology of Learning and Memory (CNLM) was established by the UC Regents in 1983 and is the first research institute in the world dedicated exclusively to the multidisciplinary study of learning and memory mechanisms. The CNLM's mission is to promote the most innovative learning and memory research transforming education, technology and brain health. In order to accomplish this mission, CNLM Faculty Fellows strive to understand how the brain learns and remembers information using a wide variety of experimental techniques at multiple levels of analysis. These include studies of the molecular cascades underlying experience-dependent changes in neuronal function, the systems in the brain that support different types of learning and memory, and how alterations in brain structure and function affect behavior.
      • Director(s):
        Michael A. Yassa, Ph.D.
      • Contact:
        General Inquiries | memory@uci.edu | (949) 824-5193


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      Center for Translational Vision Research (CTVR) *

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      Center for Translational Vision Research (CTVR) *

      The Center for Translational Vision Research (CTVR)—a provisional ORU—focuses on fostering vision research at the Gavin Herbert Eye Institute (GHEI). The purpose of the Center is to increase the knowledge of normal vision and blinding disorders, and to create innovative technologies, solutions and educational programs that improve visual health. To achieve the Center’s mission, scientists, engineers, and physicians will devote their time and talents to discoveries in the basic and translational sciences, forming the bedrock of inventive therapies for the prevention or treatment of visual diseases.
      • Director(s):
        Krzystof Palczewski
      • Co-Director(s):
        Baruch Kuppermann.
      • Contact:
        Krzystof Palczewski | kpalczew@uci.edu | (949) 824-6527


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      Center for Virus Research

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      Center for Virus Research

      The overall goal of the Center for Virus Research (CVR) ORU at the University of California, Irvine (UCI) campus is to develop interdisciplinary collaborations and studies founded in molecular virology.  The CVR provides both the administrative infrastructure as well as training and common facilities needed for this type of investigation.
      • Director(s):
        Bert Semler (Interim)
      • Contact:
        Rebeeca Taylor | taylorrr@uci.edu | 949-824-9648


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      Connected Learning Lab (CLL) *

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      Connected Learning Lab (CLL) *

      The UCI Connected Learning Lab (CLL), a provisional ORU, studies, designs, and develops new learning technologies and collaborations to foster equity, innovation, and learner-centered education. 
      • Director(s):
        Mizuko Ito
      • Contact:
        Julie Herrick, CLL Program Adminstrator | julie.herrick@uci.edu | (949) 824-1337


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      Health Policy Research Institute

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      Health Policy Research Institute

      The UC Irvine Health Policy Research Institute (HPRI) is a multi-disciplinary research unit that conducts health services research, comparative effectiveness and quality-of-care research.  HPRI focuses on the assessment and improvement of the quality of health care, especially care for chronic diseases, with an emphasis on understanding and reducing disparities in health and healthcare for racial/ethnic minorities and vulnerable populations.
      • Co-Director(s):
        Sherrie H. Kaplan and Sheldon Greenfield
      • Contact:
        Thuy Pham | ttp@uci.edu | 949-824-0095


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      Institute for Future Health (IFH)*

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      Institute for Future Health (IFH)*

      IFH aims to integrate lifestyle, community, environment, and social factors in conjunction with clinical knowledge to radically transform health systems away from hospitals and into the hands of each individual. Use power of data created by the nexus of knowledge of genetics and biology, sensors, mobile technology, knowledge-based AI systems, data management, and medical technology to empower people to be healthy. Use power of mobile phones to create personal health navigators that will power healthcare for everybody -- the poorest people living in the remotest areas in the world. We convert Healthcare to become a popular Personal Health Navigation approach.
      • Director(s):
        Ramesh Jain


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      Institute for Genomics and Bioinformatics (IGB)

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      Institute for Genomics and Bioinformatics (IGB)

      The Institute for Genomics and Bioinformatics - also known as IGB - is an Organized Research Unit dedicated to fostering innovative research at the intersection of the life and computational sciences.
      • Director(s):
        Pierre Baldi
      • Co-Director(s):
        Xiaohui Xie
      • Contact:
        Janet Ko | jko@uci.edu | 949-824-9979


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      Institute for Immunology (IFI)

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      Institute for Immunology (IFI)

      The Institute for Immunology - also known as IFI - is comprised of twenty-nine faculty members from the School of Biological Sciences and the School of Medicine, whose research and instructional efforts are in immunology.  The activities of the UCI Institute for Immunology extend to synergize with allied areas of research including biomedical engineering, public health and physical rehabilitation.
      • Director(s):
        Eric Pearlman


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      Institute for Mathematical and Behavioral Sciences (IMBS)

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      Institute for Mathematical and Behavioral Sciences (IMBS)

      The Institute for Mathematical Behavioral Sciences - also known as IMBS - is a specialized research center where the objective is to facilitate interaction and common research goals among scientists whose purpose is to formulate precisely and test theories of human behavior; this is to be interpreted in a wide sense as manifested by the membership which spans the following areas: anthropology, cognitive science, economics, engineering, logic and the philosophy of science, mathematics, political science, and sociology. Additional faculty come from management science and psychobiology.
      • Director(s):
        Zygmunt Pizlo
      • Contact:
        Clara Kwon Schultheiss | imbs@uci.edu | 949-824-7569


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      Institute for Memory Impairments and Neurological Disorders (UCI MIND)

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      Institute for Memory Impairments and Neurological Disorders (UCI MIND)

      The Institute for Memory Impairments and Neurological Disorders - also known as UCI MIND - seeks to enhance the quality of life for the elderly by researching factors and lifestyle approaches that promote successful brain aging.
      • Co-Director(s):
        Joshua Grill
      • Contact:
        Andrea Wasserman | awasserm@uci.edu | 949-824-3253


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      Institute of Transportation Studies (ITS)

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      Institute of Transportation Studies (ITS)

      The Institute of Transportation Studies - also known as ITS - a University of California organized research unit with branches at Irvine, Davis, and Berkeley, was established to foster research, education, and training in the field of transportation.
      • Director(s):
        Stephen G. Ritchie
      • Contact:
        Cam Tran | camt@uci.edu | 949-824-6564


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      Jack W. Peltason Center for the Study of Democracy

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      Jack W. Peltason Center for the Study of Democracy

      The Jack W. Peltason Center for the Study of Democracy (CSD) at the University of California, Irvine sponsors research and education aimed at improving the democratic process in the United States and expanding democracy around the world.
      • Director(s):
        Graeme Boushey (Interim)
      • Contact:
        Ekua Arhin | earhin@uci.edu | 949-824-8651


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      Reeve-Irvine Research Center (RIRC)

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      Reeve-Irvine Research Center (RIRC)

      The mission of the Reeve-Irvine Research Center is to find new treatments for spinal cord injury through the collaborative research and educational efforts of prominent scientists and clinicians both at the University of California, Irvine and around the world.



Questions about ORUs?  Contact Jill Yonago Kay, Director, Research Policy, at 949-824-1410.

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