interior of building with spiral staircase
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

Cover image of Advanced Functional Materials.

Bencherif’s Research Featured on Cover of Advanced Functional Materials

ChE Assistant Professor Sidi A. Bencherif’s research on “Oxygen-Generating Cryogels Restore T-Cell Mediated Cytotoxicity in Hypoxic Tumors” is featured on the cover of the latest issue of Advanced Functional Materials.

Dagmar Sternad

Monitoring the Neurological Functions of Preterm Infants

University Distinguished Professor Dagmar Sternad, biology/ECE, in collaboration with David Paydarfar at the University of Texas at Austin Medical School, was awarded a $1M NSF grant for “Movement as a Vital Sign in Preterm Infants.”

A Dialogue of Civilizations Led to Friendship and Joint Research

After a Dialogue of Civilizations course with ECE Associate Professor Charles DiMarzio, a group of students teamed up to research a better method of visualizing collagen monomer orientations. This idea traveled from the Andes to the Green Mountains. Three years later, it’s finally published. Main photo by Matthew Modoono/Northeastern University In 1921, Benton MacKaye climbed […]

Tommaso Melodia

Designing Ultrasonic Implantable Devices based on the Internet of Medical Things Platform

ECE Professor Tommaso Melodia was awarded a patent for designing a “Software-defined implantable ultrasonic device for use in the internet of medical things.”