SMU's Research and Innovation Week to showcase scientific inquiry, impact on the North Texas region

The future of research in North Texas

DALLAS (SMU) – SMU’s Research and Innovation Week will share the explorations of SMU students and faculty members as well as the contributions of other regional universities in a series of presentations, panels and poster sessions scheduled for March 20-25 on the SMU campus. All events are free and open to the public.

Student is lab coat

Both the keynote address and a faculty panel focused on the future of research in North Texas will be livestreamed at

“Universities conduct about half of the basic research in the United States, according to the National Science Foundation. That research is the creative engine for economic growth, locally and nationally,” said Suku Nair, SMU vice provost for research and chief innovation officer.

“It’s important to help people in and around Dallas understand how the research we do at SMU can make a difference in people’s lives,” Nair said. “It starts with what our students learn here by working with outstanding faculty who conduct research on everything from drug discovery to mitigating earth hazards. They work together in state-of-the-art facilities, supported by powerful supercomputing and capabilities in artificial intelligence and machine learning, and virtual and augmented reality.”

Corporate pioneer Taylor Shead, an award-winning serial entrepreneur, will deliver the Research and Innovation Week keynote at 6 p.m. Monday, March 20, in the Hughes-Trigg Student Center Auditorium. She describes the ed-tech company she founded, STEMuli Studios, as a gaming company at the intersection of artificial intelligence, education, and workforce development. “In short, we turned school into a video game,” she recently told the Dallas Business Journal.

Shead has spent the last 10 years supporting students from underserved communities in Pathways to Technology Early College High School Programs across the country. STEMuli partnered with Dallas ISD in 2020 to bridge the pandemic-driven disconnect between students and their teachers through a virtual learning platform.

Over two afternoons, SMU students will be available in the Hughes-Trigg Student Center Ballroom to discuss and display their research findings in poster sessions. Undergraduates will be featured at 2 p.m. Tuesday, March 21, and graduate and post-graduate students will be featured at 2 p.m. Wednesday, March 22.

A panel of faculty members from in and around the Dallas-Fort Worth area will discuss graduate education and the future of research in North Texas at 3:30 p.m. Thursday, March 23, also in the Hughes-Trigg Student Center Ballroom. The panel includes:

  • Stephen Arrowsmith, SMU associate professor and Hamilton Chair in Earth Sciences
  • Dinesh Bhatia, UT Dallas professor of electrical engineering
  • Annie Ginty, Baylor University associate professor of psychology and neuroscience
  • Ramon Lopez, UT Arlington professor of physics
  • Floyd Wormley, TCU associate provost for research and dean of Graduate Studies

Find out more about the faculty panelists here

Read more research from SMU

About SMU

SMU is the nationally ranked global research university in the dynamic city of Dallas. SMU’s alumni, faculty and over 12,000 students in eight degree-granting schools demonstrate an entrepreneurial spirit as they lead change in their professions, communities and the world.