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Innovation Plentiful at Research and Creativity Fall Forum

Innovation Plentiful at Research and Creativity Fall Forum

Posted: November 7, 2014

It’s fitting that Buffalo State’s 15th annual Faculty/Staff Research and Creativity Fall Forum, held October 30, took place during the Year of the Innovator.

The Year of the Innovator's mission is to present a campus culture that approaches challenges with a collaborative spirit and a creative mindset that reflects the core values of the School of the Professions, which is heading up this year's academic theme. Likewise, the goal of the fall forum is to showcase "the amazing and often unknown innovative research on campus," said Rita Zientek, interim dean of the School of the Professions. "This event is especially meaningful during this Year of the Innovator."

During the two-and-a-half hour forum, Houston Gymnasium was filled with diverse examples of innovation—from the anthropological study of human kindness to the sociological study of eye movements and perceptions. Approximately 110 presenters shared their research at 84 stations composed of posters, handouts, and one-on-one discussions with visitors.

The Research and Creativity Council and the Academic Affairs Office in conjunction with Research and Economic Development and Sponsored Programs Operations, supported the forum. As in past years, the goal is to develop, encourage, and support faculty and staff research and creativity and to make collaborative research endeavors and grants more accessible.

For members of the Buffalo State community, it also provides a convenient and fun way to get a glimpse of the varied research taking place across campus.

Other unusual and impressive research projects featured this year included an analysis of macroeconomics and sociological risk factors on incidents of suicide; the use of ground penetrating radar to locate historical graves; and the role of social networks in determining alcohol and drug use over the short and long term.

"What is so fascinating about the forum is the collaboration across disciplines," said Mary Kren, manager of communication and learning development for sponsored programs. This year, a web app developed on campus allowed participants to review research ahead of time, register for the forum, and post evaluations afterward. "This is the direction we’re looking to go," Kren said.

Current submissions are available online for review.

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