University researchers among "world's most influential"

By Daniel Corry

Some of the world’s most influential researchers in their respective fields work right here at the University of Illinois. Seven University researchers were named to the Thomson Reuters Highly Cited Researchers list for 2015.

The Thomson Reuters website describes their qualifiers as “some of the world’s most influential scientific minds. About three thousand researchers earned this distinction by writing the greatest number of reports officially designated by Essential Science Indicators as Highly Cited Papers.”

The list ranks the top 1% of scientific minds most cited for their field and date the paper was published.

The Illinois winners for this year include: civil and environmental engineering professor Tami Bond (highly cited in geosciences), crop sciences and plant biology professor Stephen P. Long (plant and animal science), chemistry professor Yi Lu (chemistry), electrical and computer engineering researcher Richard Masel (engineering), chemistry professor Catherine Murphy (chemistry), plant biology professor Donald Ort (plant and animal science) and materials science and engineering professor John Rogers (materials science and physics).

Bond studies particle emissions as well as the effect they have on our climate. She also works on reducing emissions to the atmosphere around the globe. Bond received her Ph.D in 2000 and joined the University in 2003. She is also the recipient of the National Science Foundation CAREER grant and a John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation Fellowship.

Long uses computational and experimental approaches to help better photosynthetic efficiency and also does work to determine the effects of climate change on crop yield. He earned his Ph.D in 1976 and came to the University in 1999.

Lu focuses on the design and engineering of metalloenzymes and their use as biocatalysts in alternative energy applications, as well as how sensors and imaging agents can be used in environmental monitoring, food safety and medicine. Lu received his Ph. D in 1992 and joined the University in 1994.

Masel specializes in catalysts and fuel cells, and is currently working on converting carbon dioxide gas into fuel and other valuable chemicals in efforts to reduce climate change. Masel earned his Ph. D in 1977 and retired from his work at the University in 2010.

Murphey’s research focuses on synthesis, shape control, biological applications and environmental implications of gold nanoparticles. She received her Ph.D in 1990 and joined the University in 2009.

Ort focuses mainly on improving plant photosynthesis and addresses how crops respond to increasing atmospheric carbon dioxide and ground level ozone concentrations. Ort also works with the U.S Department of Agriculture and was elected to the USDA’s Agricultural Research Service Science Hall of Fame in 2015. Ort received her Ph.D in 1974 and joined the University in 1978.

Rogers develops flexible, stretchable and transient electronics for practical applications in medicine and solar energy. Rogers is also a member of the National Academy of Sciences and holds a Swanlund Chair, the highest chaired position in the University. Rogers received his Ph.D in 1995 and joined the University in 1997.