Discover how your work is part of the conversation

Research on Tap brings together groups of BU researchers around important topics. Join us to hear some of BU’s great minds deliver 4-5 minute micro-talks. Then stick around for wine, cheese, and lively discussion with colleagues.

Open to faculty, staff, graduate students, and postdoctoral scholars.


Spring 2019

Understanding and Improving our Urban Climate

Monday, January 28, 2019 | 4-6 pm
Florence and Chafetz Hillel House
Bay State & Castle Rooms
213 Bay State Rd

Hosted by Lucy Hutyra, Co-Director, Urban Climate Research Initiative, and Associate Professor, Earth & Environment, CAS; and Patrick Kinney, Co-Director, Urban Climate Research Initiative, and Beverly A. Brown Professor for the Improvement of Urban Health, Environmental Health, SPH

By mid-century, seven of every ten people are projected to reside in an urban area. The concentration of infrastructure, fossil fuel emissions, and people make cities the epicenter for both climate impacts and solutions. This session highlights the new Urban Climate Research Initiative working to galvanize faculty from across the university to advance our basic scientific understanding and improve the health and livability of our cities. In this session, hosted by Lucy Hutyra, Associate Professor, Earth & Environment, CAS, and Patrick Kinney, Professor, Environmental Health, faculty from across the University discuss their research on the physical, biological, chemical, social, and policy aspects of our urban climate.


Coastal Cities, People, and Waterways

Monday, February 4, 2019 | 4-6 pm
Photonics Colloquium Room, 9th Floor
8 St. Mary’s Street

Hosted by Tony Janetos, Director, Frederick S. Pardee Center for the Study of the Longer-Range Future; and Professor, Earth & Environment, CAS

The world’s river basins and coastal cities are directly influenced by the people who live, work, and play on the water and in the surrounding landscapes. This session will feature brief presentations by BU faculty whose research focuses on some aspect of the interactions between people and waterways and coastal cities in various geographies. From the Amazon Basin to Southeast Asia and Indonesia to coastal New England, BU researchers are working to better understand the important, intrinsic connections and mutual influences between humans and inland waterways and urban areas on the coast.


The American City: Promoting Inclusion or Sowing Division?

Wednesday, February 27, 2019 | 4-6 pm
Kilachand Center
610 Commonwealth Ave.

Hosted by Graham Wilson, Professor, Political Science, and Director, Initiative on Cities; and Katharine Lusk, Executive Director, Initiative on Cities.

U.S. cities are places of tremendous diversity that can provide paths to prosperity, promote inclusion and improve well-being. Yet cities must also confront a countervailing narrative as they continue to struggle with discrimination, segregation, addiction and violence. The American City brings together scholars from across Boston University devoted to the study of urban populations, policies and leadership. They will share their latest comparative research on the benefits and consequences of housing, health, public safety, education and inclusion policies and priorities.


High Tech and High Touch: Digital Innovations from BU’s Mobile and Electronic Health-ARC

Wednesday, March 20, 2019 | 4-6 pm
Trustee Ballroom
1 Silber Way, 9th Floor

Hosted by Belinda Borrelli, Professor, Health Policy & Health Services Research, and Director, Center for Behavioral Science Research, SDM; and Director and PI,  Mobile and Electronic Health-ARCME-ARC Co-Directors:  Lisa Quintiliani PhD (School of Medicine)  & Tibor Palfai, PhD (Department of Psychological and Brain Sciences)

Mobile and Electronic Health provides an unprecedented opportunity to prevent, assess, inform, and treat health behaviors across large segments of the population. Platforms include text messaging, apps, wearables, sensors, social media, gaming, virtual reality and robotics.  The benefits of mHealth interventions include their availability and accessibility, cost-effective delivery, scalability, ability to personalize and tailor content, facilitation of patient-provider communication, coordination of patient care across systems, and provision of evidenced-based treatment in real-time and in real-world settings. The mission of the Mobile & Electronic Health ARC (ME-ARC) is to conduct transdisciplinary research and training in mobile and electronic health to improve health across the lifespan, particularly among the most vulnerable populations. The ME-ARC is comprised of a PI/Director (Belinda Borrelli), two Co-Directors (Lisa Quintiliani, Tibor Palfai), a steering committee, an external advisory board, trainees, and over 100 member affiliates across numerous schools at Boston University. Steering committee members have expertise in: implementation science, behavioral science, medicine, informatics/bioinformatics, software development, health literacy, engineering, and global health.  Since January 2016, the ME-ARC has hosted invited speakers at monthly seminars, held yearly symposiums, and funded and conducted pilot projects. The ME-ARC coalesces mobile health resources and researchers at Boston University. This Research on Tap will highlight some of the many innovative projects in mobile and electronic health at Boston University.


Mechanobiology: How Force and Stretch Shape Life

Tuesday, April 2, 2019 | 4-6 pm
Photonics Colloquium Room, 9th Floor
8 St. Mary’s Street

Co-hosted by Elise MorganProfessor, Department of Mechanical Engineering; Division of Materials Science & Engineering; and Department of Biomedical Engineering

Co-hosted by Katya Ravid, Professor, Medicine and Biochemistry, School of Medicine; and Director, Interdisciplinary Biomedical Research Office (IBRO)

Mechanobiology is the study of how physical cues, such as force and stretch, affect biological processes. Physical cues play important and often diverse roles in the inner workings of cells, collective actions of cells, interactions between cells and their extracellular matrix, and basic functions of organs. In this session, faculty from across both campuses of the university will discuss their research on understanding fundamental phenomena in mechanobiology and the applications of this understanding to diagnosis and treatment of disease.