UW News

College of Arts & Sciences


February 1, 2023

Q&A: UW historian explores how a Husky alum influenced postcolonial Sudan

A large 'W' statue in the snow

Christopher Tounsel, associate professor of history at the University of Washington, found multiple connections between Sudan and Seattle while researching his upcoming book. The most prominent was the late Andrew Brimmer, a UW alum who in 1966 became the first Black member of the Federal Reserve Board of Governors.


January 31, 2023

Four UW researchers named AAAS Fellows in 2022

head shot montage

Four University of Washington researchers have been named AAAS Fellows, according to a Jan. 31 announcement by the American Association for the Advancement of Science. They are among 506 new fellows from around the world elected in 2022, who are recognized for their “scientifically and socially distinguished achievements” in science and engineering.


January 27, 2023

ArtSci Roundup: Doce Sones para Doce Poetas / Twelve Songs for Twelve Poets, Thick as Mud exhibition opening, and more

Attend lectures, performances, and more! January 18 – February 15, 7:30 PM |History Lecture Series: Medieval Made Modern, Kane Hall The medieval period has always occupied a paradoxical position in our cultural memory. An age of fantasy unimaginably distant from historical reality, it is also an era onto which writers and artists—and now moviemakers and…


January 19, 2023

ArtSci Roundup: Behzod Abduraimov, “Manzanar, Diverted” Screening and Director talk, and more

Start the new year with lectures, performances, and more! January 24, 7:30 PM |Behzod Abduraimov, Meany Hall Since winning the London International Piano Competition in 2009, Behzod Abduraimov’s passionate and virtuosic performances have dazzled audiences around the world. His “prodigious technique and rhapsodic flair” (The New York Times) have defined his career as a recording…


January 13, 2023

ArtSci Roundup: Democracy and the 2022 Midterm Elections, UW Dance Presents, Physics Slam, and more

Start the new year with lectures, performances, and more! January 18, 6:30 PM | Democracy and the 2022 Midterm Elections, Part II, Kane Hall Join UW Professor Jacob Grumbach for the second and final lecture on the 2022 midterm elections. In this talk, he will address the election results as well as ways we can…


January 12, 2023

How did the Butterfly Nebula get its wings? It’s complicated

Something is amiss in the Butterfly Nebula. When a team led by astronomers at the University of Washington compared two exposures of this planetary nebula that had been taken by the Hubble Space Telescope in 2009 and 2020, they saw dramatic changes in the material within its “wings.” As the team will report on Jan. 12 at the 241st meeting of the American Astronomical Society in Seattle, powerful winds are apparently driving complex alterations of material within the Butterfly Nebula, behavior not seen in planetary nebulae to date. The researchers want to understand how such activity is possible from what should be a “sputtering, largely moribund star with no remaining fuel.”


January 11, 2023

Old and new stars paint very different pictures of the Triangulum galaxy

On Jan. 11 at the 241st meeting of the American Astronomical Society in Seattle, a team led by scientists at the University of Washington and the Center for Computational Astrophysics reported something unexpected about the distinct populations of stars that make up the Triangulum galaxy: In this satellite galaxy, a close companion of the much larger Andromeda galaxy, old and new stars occur in separate parts of the galaxy’s structure, something not seen in galaxies like our own and so far not reporter for other satellite galaxies.


January 10, 2023

The seven-year photobomb: Distant star’s dimming was likely a ‘dusty’ companion getting in the way, astronomers say

University of Washington astronomers were on the lookout for “stars behaving strangely” when an automated alert from pointed them to Gaia17bpp, a star that had gradually brightened over a 2 1/2-year period. But follow-up analyses indicated that Gaia17bpp wasn’t changing. Instead, the star is likely part of a rare type of binary system. Its apparent brightening was the end of a years-long eclipse by an unusual, “dusty” stellar companion.


January 9, 2023

Climate ‘presses’ and ‘pulses’ impact Magellanic penguins — a marine predator — with guidance for conservationists

Climate change will reshape ecosystems through two types of events: short-term, extreme events — or “pulses” — and long-term changes, or “presses.” Understanding the effects of presses and pulses is essential as conservationists and policymakers try to preserve ecosystems and safeguard biodiversity. Researchers at the University of Washington have discovered how different presses and pulses impacted Magellanic penguins — a migratory marine predator — over nearly four decades and found that, though individual presses and pulses impacted penguins in a variety of ways, both were equally important for the future survival of the penguin population. They also found that these types of climate changes, taken together, are leading to an overall population decline at their historically largest breeding site.


December 15, 2022

ArtSci Roundup: January Preview

Start the new year with lectures, performances, exhibitions and more.


December 12, 2022

Trouble falling asleep at night? Chase that daytime light, study shows

A study measuring the sleep patterns of students at the University of Washington found that students fell asleep later in the evening and woke up later in the morning during winter, when daylight hours on the UW’s Seattle campus are limited and the skies are notoriously overcast. Researchers believe the students’ natural circadian clocks were being “pushed back” or delayed in winter because they were not getting enough exposure during the day to natural light, and that getting more daytime light exposure can help reverse this.


December 8, 2022

NASA’s James Webb Space Telescope shows how several stars ‘stirred up’ the Southern Ring Nebula

In a study published Dec. 8 in Nature Astronomy, an international research team, led by Orsola De Marco of Macquarie University in Sydney, Australia, analyzed 10 highly detailed exposures taken by the JWST of the Southern Ring Nebula. Their calculations show the central star that ejected the expanding nebula gas was originally three times the mass of the sun, and that unseen companions shaped the nebula’s intricate features.


December 2, 2022

‘Good manners are good economics’: UW’s Anthony Gill on the value of giving

Holiday sweater with a cat's frowning face on it and the words Merry Whatever.

University of Washington political science professor Anthony Gill explains the social and economic value of gift-giving — and how even unwanted gifts help promote trust and build relationships.


November 22, 2022

ArtSci Roundup: Gender & Protests in Iran panel; Languages of Angels performance; Belonging, Queer Relationality, & Black Women’s Labor talk, and more

Connect with the UW community every week through public events and exhibitions, summarized in this ArtSci Roundup.


November 21, 2022

Q&A: Managing Washington’s gray wolf population – through fear

gray wolf looking at the camera

Wolf management in Washington has been controversial. Rob Anderson, who obtained his Ph.D. at the University of Washington, explains the dynamic of managing a species through fear.


November 10, 2022

ArtSci Roundup: Book Talk with Cathy Davidson, Poetry with Ricardo Ruiz, Jazz Innovations with School of Music faculty and students, and more.

Connect with the UW community every week through public events and exhibitions, summarized in this ArtSci Roundup.


November 3, 2022

ArtSci Roundup: Assessing the 2022 Midterm Election Results With Implications for the Next Two Years and for 2024, Empires Strick Back: Football and Colonialism, and more

Connect with the UW community every week through public events and exhibitions, summarized in this ArtSci Roundup.


November 2, 2022

Infants less likely to contract COVID, develop severe symptoms than household caregivers

baby feet

In one of the first studies to explore how COVID-19 specifically affects older infants, researchers from the University of Washington and at institutions at four other locations in the Western and Southern U.S. found that the number of infected people in a household was the factor most closely linked with the infant’s likelihood of being infected.


October 28, 2022

ArtSci Roundup: Democracy and the 2022 Midterm Elections, Hafu ハーフ film screening, and more!

Connect with the UW community every week through public events and exhibitions, summarized in this ArtSci Roundup.


October 21, 2022

UW’s Dianne Xiao receives Packard Fellowship for research on new materials for sustainable chemical synthesis

Headshot of smiling woman

Dianne Xiao, a University of Washington assistant professor of chemistry, has been awarded a 2022 Packard Fellowship for Science and Engineering for her research on creating new materials to make chemical reactions that are compatible with renewable energy sources and raw materials.


ArtSci Roundup: Miha Sarani exhibition opening, U.S. Deputy Secretary of State Wendy R. Sherman conversation, and more

Connect with the UW community every week through public events and exhibitions, summarized in this ArtSci Roundup.


October 17, 2022

Isotope data strengthens suspicions of ivory stockpile theft

A study led by Thure Cerling, a professor at the University of Utah, and co-authored by Sam Wasser, a University of Washington professor of biology, used carbon isotope science to show that tusks from a guarded government stockpile in Burundi have somehow made their way into the hands of illegal ivory traders.


October 14, 2022

ArtSci Roundup: Grammy winner Morris Robinson, Washington State Poet Laureate Rena Priest, and more!

Connect with the UW community every week through public events and exhibitions, summarized in this ArtSci Roundup.


October 12, 2022

Endangered fruit-eating animals play an outsized role in a tropical forest — losing them could have dire consequences

A new study by researchers at the University of Washington shows that losing a particular group of endangered animals — those that eat fruit and help disperse the seeds of trees and other plants — could severely disrupt seed-dispersal networks in the Atlantic Forest, a shrinking stretch of tropical forest and critical biodiversity hotspot on the coast of Brazil.


October 7, 2022

ArtSci Roundup: Indigenous Peoples’ Day on-air, Chamber Dance Company, and more

Connect with the UW community every week through public events and exhibitions, summarized in this ArtSci Roundup.


October 6, 2022

Chamber Dance Company shifts focus, reimagines repertoire in return to stage

Comprised of University of Washington graduate students, the Chamber Dance Company works to perform, record and archive dance works of artistic and historical significance. This year, the company will exclusively perform contemporary works created within the last 15 years.


October 5, 2022

New faculty books: Black womanhood and corporate branding, reexamining Indigenous earthworks and more

Three book covers on a wooden table

Black womanhood and corporate branding, Indigenous mound building and volunteering for the Peace Corps are among the subjects of recent and upcoming books by University of Washington faculty.


September 29, 2022

International field course held in Indonesia and led by UW professor ends after 30 years

Group photo of people behind banner

Randall Kyes established the International Field Study Program-Indonesia at the UW. The month-long study abroad program provided field-based educational and research opportunities for students from the UW, Indonesia and other participating countries.


September 26, 2022

UW joins industry-academia alliance to accelerate research in neuroscience

An image of neurons under a microscope

The University of Washington has joined the Alliance for Therapies in Neuroscience (ATN), a long-term research partnership between academia and industry geared to transform the fight against brain diseases and disorders of the central nervous system. Launched in 2021 by the University of California, San Francisco, UC Berkeley, Genentech — a member of the Roche group — and Roche Holding AG, the ATN seeks to accelerate the development of new therapies for a broad range of brain and central nervous system conditions.


September 21, 2022

New Global and Regional Studies major offers undergraduates a customizable window on the world

Hands typing on laptop keyboard

Global and Regional Studies, a new major in the University of Washington Jackson School of International Studies, offers more flexible course options, allows undergraduates focus on a particular geographic region and theme and provides more choices for the capstone experience.


September 7, 2022

These female hummingbirds evolved to look like males — apparently to evade aggression

1 in 5 adult female white-necked jacobin hummingbirds look like males. New research from the University of Washington shows that this is a rare case of “deceptive mimicry” within a species: Females with male-like plumage are trying to pass themselves off as males, and as a result receive a benefit in the form of reduced aggression from males.


August 29, 2022

Black-owned restaurants disproportionately impacted during pandemic

A new study led by the University of Washington uses cellphone location data to estimate the number of visits to Black-owned restaurants in 20 U.S. cities during the first year of the pandemic. The study finds that despite the “Black-owned” labelling campaign launched by companies such as Yelp, the number of visits to Black-owned restaurants dropped off after an initial spike and was inconsistent around the country.


August 25, 2022

‘Dangerous’ and ‘extremely dangerous’ heat stress to become more common by 2100

maps of globe colored orange and red

A new study projects the number of days with “dangerous” and “extremely dangerous” mixtures of heat and humidity by the end of this century. Even if global warming is limited to 2 degrees Celsius, results show that deadly heat waves will become much more common in the mid-latitudes, and many tropical regions will experience “dangerous” heat for about half the year.


August 12, 2022

New faculty books: How your brain works, cycling around the world and more

Four books lined up on a table

Recent and upcoming books from University of Washington faculty include those from the Jackson School of International Studies, the Department of Psychology and the Runstad Department of Real Estate.


August 8, 2022

Q&A: Story collection from UW professor tackles messy emotions of domestic relationships

Black and white photo of child's hand holding an adult's hand by the finger

Maya Sonenberg, professor of English at the University of Washington, highlights common feelings that are often silenced due to shame and societal expectations in her new short story collection, “Bad Mothers, Bad Daughters.”


July 25, 2022

New study challenges old views on what’s ‘primitive’ in mammalian reproduction

Which group of mammals has the more “primitive” reproductive strategy — marsupials, with their short gestation periods, or humans and other placental mammals, which have long gestation periods? For decades, biologists viewed marsupial reproduction as “more primitive.” But University of Washington scientists have discovered that a third group of mammals, the long-extinct multituberculates, had a long gestation period like placental mammals. Since multituberculates split off from the rest of the mammalian lineage before placentals and marsupials had even evolved, these findings question the view that marsupials were “less advanced” than their placental cousins.


July 22, 2022

Novel HIV combination therapies could prevent viral escape and rebound

New research by scientists at the University of Washington, the Max Planck Institute for Dynamics and Self-Organization and the University of Cologne indicates that carefully designed cocktails of broadly neutralizing antibodies could help treat HIV while minimizing the risk of the virus evolving to “escape” treatment.


July 15, 2022

Seven UW faculty members elected to the Washington State Academy of Sciences

Campus photo

Seven professors at the University of Washington are among 25 new members of the Washington State Academy of Sciences for 2022, according to a July 15 announcement.


July 12, 2022

New faculty books: Threats to US democracy, early history of gay rights, and more

four book covers on a table

Federalism, queer history, the impact of the Russian Revolution on Jewish communities, and the evolution of Filipinx American studies are among the subjects of recent and upcoming books by UW faculty.


July 8, 2022

Sweetened beverage taxes produce net economic benefits for lower-income communities

Bottles and cans of soda on store shelves

New research led by University of Washington professors James Krieger and Melissa Knox found that sweetened beverage taxes redistributed dollars from higher- to lower-income households.



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