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Research

Boldly innovating to impact society and transform the world.

Northeastern University has achieved the prestigious recognition as a top-tier R1 institution for research activity among U.S. colleges and universities by the Carnegie Classification of Institutions of Higher Education. Our tradition of partnership and engagement guides a use-inspired and interdisciplinary research enterprise that is strategically aligned with three global imperatives: health, security, and sustainability. Our annual Scholarship Report highlights pioneering research and achievements over the past year.


The College of Engineering has over 185 tenured/tenure-track faculty, each bringing complementary areas of research expertise to address pressing global challenges. Their state-of-art-research looks at critical issues in materials, processes, systems, infrastructure, hardware and software at every scale—nano to macro to global—grounded in a translational approach that integrates the values of fundamental and applied research.

Our faculty boldly innovate by collaborating across engineering disciplines and the university, as well as with government, academia, and industry. The College of Engineering has 17 multidisciplinary research centers and institutes with funding from eight federal agencies. Our commitment to conducting transformative research to better the world can be seen by a 139% increase in external research funding from 2014 to 2020, and by an investment in research capabilities such as our 223,000 square foot, six-story Interdisciplinary Science and Engineering Complex.

Government and Industry Partnerships

Industry and government partner with Northeastern for basic and applied research. The reason is simple: they know that at Northeastern, our two guiding principles are interdisciplinary collaboration and engagement with the real world. These principles are reflected in our research programs, which are driven by critical issues in materials, processes, systems and infrastructure. Our research collaborations are a win-win-win: our partners receive knowledge and products tailored to their needs, our researchers validate and extend their work, and our students receive training and experience to become the next generation of effective technologists.


Research At-A-Glance

$86M

External Research Funding (2020)

17

Research Centers and Institutes

95

Young Investigator Awards (as of Dec. 2020)

138

Patents 2014-Aug. 2020


Recent News

Gupta publishes a new book on Sustainable Production and Logistics

MIE Professor Surendra M. Gupta’s new book titled “Sustainable Production and Logistics: Modeling and Analysis” presents issues faced by planners of production and distribution operations in terms of smart manufacturing and sustainability, using efficient quantitative techniques in a variety of decision-making situations.

Designing Storm Strength Simulations to Predict and Mitigate Coastal Flooding

MES/CEE Assistant Professor Samuel Muñoz and CEE/MES Professor Qin Jim Chen, in collaboration with Jeffrey Donnelly from Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, were awarded a $590k NSF grant for “Morphodynamic simulations of coastal storms and overwash to characterize back-barrier lake stratigraphies.”

Abur Receives DOE Solar Energy Technology Office 2020 Award

ECE Professor Ali Abur was awarded a $750K DOE grant from the Solar Energy Technologies Office for “Graph-Learning-Assisted State and Event Tracking for Solar-Penetrated Power Grids with Heterogeneous Data Sources.”

Semiconductor Chip Shortages Hopefully Spur Innovation

ECE Professor Matteo Rinaldi hopes that the shortage of semiconductor chips might spur innovation and re-imagining of the global supply chain and of the chips themselves. Here’s why the semiconductor chip shortage may end up being a good thing Main photo by Ruby Wallau/Northeastern University A shortage of the semiconductor chips that serve as the […]