The School of Social Sciences to Kick off Fall Lineup of Research Relays in Collaboration with the George R. Brown School of Engineering

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On September 15, 2022, the School of Social Sciences will host the first Research Relays of the 2022-2023 academic year. The purpose of Research Relays is to provide a relaxed setting to allow faculty to learn about each other’s research, promote informal discussions and stimulate collaborations.

2022 September Research Relay flyer
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During the upcoming Research Relays, the School of Social Sciences and the George R. Brown School of Engineering will partner to feature novel collaborative research between social sciences and engineering. Four teams will be given six minutes each to present their collaborative research in a “lightning talk” format. A reception will follow the presentations to give attendees the opportunity to connect and discuss with the speakers.

Rachel Kimbro, dean of the School of Social Sciences, and Luay Nakhleh, dean of the George R. Brown School of Engineering, will provide opening remarks.

“We began the Research Relays in the social sciences last year to showcase the innovative research being done in our school and are thrilled that our first one this fall is in collaboration with our engineering colleagues,” said Kimbro. She continued, “There is truly pathbreaking work being done in these engineering-social sciences teams.”

September Presenters
  • Elizabeth Roberto, assistant professor of sociology, and Santiago Segarra, W. M. Rice Trustee Assistant Professor of electrical and computer engineering
  • Michael Byrne, professor of psychological sciences, and Marcia O’Malley, associate dean for research and innovation for the George R. Brown School of Engineering and Thomas Michael Panos Family Professor in mechanical engineering
  • Mallesh Pai, Lay Family Chair in economics and associate professor of economics, and Andrew Schaefer, Noah Harding Chair and professor of computational applied mathematics and operations research
  • Christopher Fagundes, professor of psychological sciences, and Akane Sano, assistant professor of electrical and computer engineering

“The global challenges that our world faces are very complex and reside at the intersection of society, culture and technology,” said Nakhleh. He continued, “Therefore, inter-school collaborations are a must if we are to tackle these challenges successfully. Interdisciplinary work has long been a hallmark of research at Rice University. However, one might argue that this work is still happening within the boundaries of individual schools, rather than crossing these boundaries. I am very excited about these joint Research Relays between the schools of social sciences and engineering, as they highlight some of these inter-school collaborations and hopefully send a clear message that such collaborations are not only essential but also fun.”

The fall Research Relays will take place on September 15, October 7 and November 30, 2022. Click Here to RSVP for the September 15 Research Relays. For questions about Research Relays, contact Pat DeLucia at