Ten faculty members have received named professorships or have been named distinguished service professors. Luc Anselin, John R. Birge, John List and Angela Olinto received distinguished service professorships; and Ethan Bueno de Mesquita, Michael Franklin, Christopher Kennedy, Jason Merchant, Haresh Sapra and Nir Uriel received named professorships.
Biological Sciences Division
Nir Uriel has been named the Rabbi Esformes Professor in Medicine.
Uriel is a leader in the field of mechanical circulatory support and in the medical management of heart transplant patients. He developed and validated a set of decision-making tools now used to guide treatment of patients with mechanical assist devices. His research focuses on the prevention and treatment of advanced heart failure, ways to improve heart transplantation and advances in mechanical circulatory support. He has been a pioneer in the care of high-risk transplant patients, such as those who are HIV-positive or who have received radiation to the chest during cancer treatment.
Uriel is the national co-principal investigator for the Momentum 3 trial—the largest such study ever done—which will evaluate the safety and efficacy of a new heart-assist device in 1,028 patients. He is also the vice chair of the International Society of Heart and Lung Transplantation’s Mechanical Circulatory Support Council and will become chair in April 2017.
Uriel joined the UChicago faculty in 2014.
Division of the Humanities
Christopher Kennedy has been named the William H. Colvin Professor in Linguistics and the College.
Kennedy’s work is geared toward discovering and describing the principles involved in relating linguistic forms to meanings. He determines how this mapping is achieved through the interaction of properties of the linguistic system, properties of cognition more generally, and broader features of the contexts in which we use language to communicate; and understanding the extent to which structural and typological features of language can be explained in terms of meaning. Over the past two decades, he has investigated these issues primarily through an exploration of expressions of comparison, amount and degree, and through work on vagueness. His research also has touched on core issues in the syntax-semantics interface such as ellipsis, anaphora and quantification.
Kennedy is the author of two books, numerous journal articles and articles in edited volumes. He is associate editor of the journal Language and the Journal of Semantics and served as chair of the Department of Linguistics from 2008-2015.
He received a 2014 fellowship from the Neubauer Collegium for Culture and Society and is a 2015 recipient of the Faculty Award for Excellence in Graduate Teaching and Mentoring.
Kennedy joined the UChicago faculty in 2005.
Jason Merchant has been named the first Lorna Puttkammer Straus Professor in Linguistics and the College.
Merchant works primarily in the theory of syntax and on its interface with semantics and morphology. Most of his research concentrates on the cross-linguistic grammatical constraints on ellipsis, cases in which the form seems to underdetermine the perceived (and intended) meaning. He is interested in data from a wide variety of languages but has published mostly on Germanic, Greek, Slavic and Romance languages.
He is the author of two books and numerous journal publications and other articles. He has served as deputy dean of the Division of the Humanities since 2013 and this year will complete two years as chair of the Department of Slavic Languages and Literatures. Previously, he served as director of undergraduate studies in the Department of Linguistics, from 2001-2008.
Merchant is a member of several scholarly editorial boards. In 2012, he received the Llewellyn John and Harriet Manchester Quantrell Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching, and is currently a fellow with the Neubauer Collegium for Society and Culture.
Merchant joined the UChicago faculty in 2001.
Division of the Physical Sciences
Michael Franklin has been named the first Liew Family Chair of Computer Science.
An authority on databases, data analytics, data management and distributed systems, he also serves as senior adviser to the provost on computation and data science.
Franklin most recently was the Thomas M. Siebel Professor of Computer Science and chair of the Computer Science Division of the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Sciences at the University of California, Berkeley. He directed Berkeley’s Algorithms, Machines and People Laboratory, a leading academic big data analytics research center, and served as an executive committee member for the Berkeley Institute for Data Science, a campus-wide initiative to advance data science environments.
An entrepreneur in addition to his roles in academica, Franklin founded and became chief technology officer of Truviso, a data analytics company later purchased by Cisco Systems. He serves on the technical advisory boards of various data-driven technology companies, including Databricks, an AMPLab spinout based on the popular Apache Spark analytics framework that was developed at the lab.
Franklin is a fellow of the Association for Computing Machinery and a two-time recipient of the ACM SIGMOD Test of Time award. His many other honors include the outstanding adviser award from Berkeley’s Computer Science Graduate Student Association.
Franklin joined the UChicago faculty in 2016.