Knowledge Lab Awards $1.38 Million for Meta Research

The University of Chicago has awarded grants totaling $1.38 million through its Knowledge Lab initiative in support of data-driven projects that explore how ideas are formed and circulated.

Funded by the John Templeton Foundation, the grants will provide support for fifteen researchers at eleven institutions in fields ranging from computer science and plasma physics to sociology and literature. In addition to researchers at the lab's MetaKnowledge Research Network and the University of Washington, the University of Wisconsin, Northwestern, UCLA, and Columbia, grants will support researchers from Notre Dame, Carnegie Mellon, Cornell, MIT, Oregon Health and Science University, and the Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago. Within a year, researchers will publish a paper related to their project and will share their findings on online platforms and in other media.

"Knowledge Lab is about understanding where questions and answers come from, in science and elsewhere," said James Evans, Knowledge Lab director and an associate professor of sociology and senior fellow at the University of Chicago's Computation Institute. "And when you understand that deeply enough — those biases, those heuristics, those rules — when you take those into account, you can generate better hypotheses and technology."

Update: Monday, December 15, 2014 - 1:01 p.m.

PND has corrected the headline and first two sentences of this story to reflect the fact that the grants were funded by the Templeton Foundation and were awarded by, not to, the Knowledge Lab initiative.

"Metaknowledge Projects Receive $1.38 Million in Grant Funding." University of Chicago Press Release 12/02/2014.