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ENE Memo: December 15, 2014

From the Head: 12/15


During times of uncertain change, the idea of resilience enters the conversation. Indeed the term has arisen several times during ENE Advances over the past few years. 

In 2011, Patrick Martin-Breen and Marty Anderies wrote a report, Resilience: A Literature Review for the Rockefeller Foundation. They identify three levels of resilience: engineering resilience, systems resilience and resilience in complex adaptive systems. The follow are extracts from their report.

Engineering Resilience

At the simplest level, increased resilience implies bouncing back faster after stress, enduring greater stresses, and being disturbed less by a given amount of stress. “Stress” can imply both chronic difficulty or an acute crisis. In this basic sense, to be resilient is to withstand a large disturbance without, in the end, changing, disintegrating, or becoming permanently damaged; to return to normal quickly; and to distort less in the face of such stresses.

Systems Resilience

The world is in flux; even if we do not consider global warming, social, technological, economic, and ecological conditions constantly change. There is, for better or worse, no fixed “normal”, though it can seem so if we only focus on the short-term. There are, however, fixed functions that humans either need to survive, or generally want to maintain: food, water, shelter, medical care, communities, cities, and parks, to name a few. In some of the world, the needs are provided for; in others, they are not, but few would deny that providing such needs is a priority.

 Resilience in Complex Adaptive Systems

The key feature that distinguishes systems resilience from complex adaptive systems resilience is adaptive capacity or adaptability. It is not just adaptation—change—in response to conditions. It is the ability of systems—households, people, communities, ecosystems, nations—to generate new ways of operating, new systemic relationships. If we consider that parts or connections in systems fail or become untenable, adaptive capacity is a key determiner of resilience. Hence in complex adaptive systems, resilience is best defined as the ability to withstand, recover from, and reorganize in response to crises. Function is maintained, but system structure may not be.

This is an interesting topic that we as a community should explore more deeply in the coming year.


Calendar: 12/15

Fall 2014

  • Dec. 15: 7th Annual YouTube Extravaganza, ARMS 1028, 9:00-10:00am
  • Dec. 21: Commencement

Spring 2015

  • Jan. 5: Faculty return
  • Jan. 12: Classes commence
  • Jan 16: Staff Meeting, TBD, 8:30-9:30am   
  • Jan. 19 Martin Luther King Day
  • Feb. 25: ENE Outstanding Alumni Awards dinner, PMU, 6pm
  • March 16-20: Spring Break
  • April 8-15: Research Week: Celebrating the ENE Research Facility in Wang Hall, 4:30pm
  • April 7: ENE Industrial Advisory Council meeting, Wang Hall, 8am-3:30pm   
  • April 10: College of Engineering Faculty Awards of Excellence Dinner, TBD  
  • May 1: ENE Best Teacher and McDowell Best Advisor Awards 2015, ARMS 1300, 11am  
  • May 1: Classes End
  • May 16: ENE Graduation Celebration, Wang Hall, 11am (Commencement, Elliot Hall, 2pm)

News and Information: 12/15

Security and Crime Prevention

As we near the end of the 2014-2015 fall semester, we request that you refresh and redouble your level of vigilance on the safety and security of campus facilities.  With classes ending, and with students and faculty leaving the campus, it is important to increase your attention to security and report any suspicious behavior to the Purdue Police department.  Department heads are asked to ensure this letter reaches faculty, staff and all graduate assistants in their departments.

If you see something say something!

All Purdue faculty, staff, and students are encouraged to report suspicious activity or situations immediately to the Purdue Police at the non-emergency number:  494-8221.  Examples of these situations include broken doors or windows, unusual activities in buildings at unusual hours, vehicles parked in odd locations, and abandoned backpacks or packages.

Secure laboratories and offices!

Many crimes, such as theft or vandalism, are crimes of “opportunity”.  While we foster the concept of an open and collaborative environment, it is important that we secure our facilities to prevent the theft of or damage to valuable university and personal property.  The most common targets are computers, cell phones and purses, and each of you know best what equipment or research materials, such as chemical or biological agents, might be considered targets.

Report all incidents!

It is the responsibility of all Purdue community members to report thefts, vandalism, or other crimes, as well as threats of crimes, as soon as they are discovered.  Although the incident may be minor, patterns may be observed by law enforcement personnel to more readily identify and apprehend individuals involved.  Timeliness in reporting is of the essence.

For further information please contact the Purdue University Police at (765) 494-8221.  As always, in an emergency, please dial 911 from any phone.

Vice Provost for Teaching and Learning Announced

Dr. Frank J. Dooley has been announced as the Vice Provost for Teaching and Learning, a position he held in an interim capacity for nearly four months. 

Frank joined the Office of the Provost in 2011 as a provost fellow assigned to help develop Instruction Matters: Purdue Academic Course Transformation (IMPACT), and expand Purdue’s summer program. His ability to recognize opportunities and generate effective, positive results was quickly recognized; he was named associate vice provost for undergraduate academic affairs in 2012.  

In his role as vice provost for teaching and learning, Frank will work closely with Beth McCuskey, interim vice provost for student life, and Pam Horne, associate vice provost for enrollment management and dean of admissions, to ensure the smooth integration of programs and initiatives for the new Division of Student Academic Affairs.

Kudos: 12/15 Julia Thompson on successfully defending her dissertation titled "Engineering Community Engagement Partnerships: Investigating Motivation, Nature and Structure." Julia is looking for post-doc or other staff/research opportunities in West Lafayette from May 2015. Farshid Marbouti and Kelsey Rodgers on successfully passing their preliminary exams. Yoon, S. Y., Dyehouse, M., Lucietto, A. M., Diefes-Dux, H. A. & Capobianco, B. (2014). The effects of integrated science, technology, and engineering education on elementary students’ knowledge and identity development. School Science and Mathematics, 114(8), 380-391. Rodgers, K. J., Horvath, A. K., Jung, H., Fry, A. S., Diefes-Dux, H., & Cardella, M. E. (2014). Students’ perceptions of and responses to teaching assistant and peer feedback, Interdisciplinary Journal of Problem-based Learning, 9(2). Krishna Madhavan on the publication of an article in the December issue of Prism. “Advances from AEE: Who Knows What, and Whom” can be found at: It provides an intro to DIA2 (through iKNEER).

Funding Opportunities: 12/15

Selected Funding Opportunities:

NSF Mechanics of Materials and Structures (MOMS)  This program supports fundamental research in mechanics as related to the behavior of deformable solid materials and respective structures under internal and external actions. A diverse and interdisciplinary spectrum of research is supported with emphasis on research that leads to advances in i) theory, experimental, and/or computational methods in mechanics, and/or ii) uses contemporary mechanics methods to address modern challenges in materials and structures. Deadline: February 17

NSF Infrastructure Management and Extreme Events (IMEE) The IMEE program supports fundamental, multidisciplinary research on the impact of hazards and extreme events upon civil infrastructure and society. The program is focused upon research on the mitigation of, preparedness for, response to, and recovery from multi-hazard disasters. Deadline: February 17

NSF Geotechnical Engineering and Materials (GEM) The GEM Program combines and replaces the Geotechnical Engineering Program and the Geomechanics and Geomaterials Program. This new Program supports fundamental research in soil and rock mechanics and dynamics in support of physical civil infrastructure systems. Also supported is research on improvement of the engineering properties of geologic materials by mechanical, biological, thermal, chemical, and electrical processes. Deadline: February 17

NSF Dear Colleague Letter: Increasing College Opportunity Through Improved Mathematics Success in the First Two Years of College  This DCL highlights funding opportunities for innovative, early-stage work to improve success in mathematics in the first two years of college. This includes studies on ways to improve the learning of the content of developmental mathematics, independent of setting, and design and development work on interventions and tools, including technology-enhanced learning approaches. Proposers may request supplemental funding to existing awards, Early-concept Grants for Exploratory Research (EAGER) funding, or funding for conferences.  Deadline: May 1

NSF Dear Colleague Letter: MPS Graduate Research Supplement for Veterans (MPS-GRSV) The Directorate for Mathematical and Physical Sciences at the NSF is now accepting supplemental requests to support one (additional) Ph.D. student per award, as long as the graduate student is a United States Veteran. Supplemental requests may be submitted at any time.

NIH-NCI Mentored Research Scientist Development Award to Promote Diversity (K01) This FOA provides salary and research support for a sustained period of "protected time" for intensive cancer research career development under the guidance of an experienced mentor, or sponsor. The award is available for career development of individuals from groups nationally underrepresented in the biomedical, clinical, behavioral, and social sciences. Deadline: February 12

NIH-NCI Mentored Patient-Oriented Research Career Development Award to Promote Diversity (K23) The purpose of this award is to support the career development of investigators who have made a commitment to focus their research endeavors on patient-oriented cancer research. The award is available for career development of individuals with a health professional doctoral degree and are from groups nationally underrepresented in the biomedical, clinical, behavioral, and social sciences. Deadline: February 12

Limited Submissions:

Preproposals and rankings to the EVPRP should be e-mailed to Purdue’s open limited submission competitions, limited submission policy, and templates for preproposals may be found at  For any case in which the number of preproposals received is no more than the number of proposals allowed by the sponsor, the EVPRP will notify the PI(s) that an internal competition will be unnecessary.

 Limited Submission: HHS-CDC Occupational Safety and Health Education and Research Centers (T42)  NIOSH is mandated to provide an adequate supply of qualified personnel to carry out the purposes of the Occupational Safety and Health Act, and the Education and Research Centers (ERCs) are one of the principal means for meeting this mandate. ERCs are academic institutions that provide interdisciplinary graduate training and continuing education in the core occupational safety and health areas of industrial hygiene, occupational health nursing, occupational medicine residency, occupational safety, as well as other closely related occupational safety and health fields.  For this opportunity, Purdue may submit only one application.

  • Internal deadline:  Contact by December 15
  • Sponsor deadline: January 15

Funding Resources:

The EVPRP website includes a link entitled Funding Resources. This link includes sections containing Internal and External Funding Resources.  Additionally, there is a link for Search Tools and Alerts.    Those who would like assistance in setting up their Pivot E-mail funding alerts may want to take advantage of our tutorial, which may be found on the Search Tools and Alerts link.

The newest issues of Research Development and Grantwriting News are available at:

Another resource for corporate and foundation funding opportunities is the University Development Office. 


NSF Dear Colleague Letter: Information on the Engineering for Natural Hazards (ENH) Program within the Division of Civil, Mechanical and Manufacturing Innovation (CMMI)

As always, we appreciate your sharing this information with your faculty.  Please contact Sue Grimes (, Kristyn Jewell (, or Perry Kirkham ( with any questions.

To suggest content for future issues of ENE Memo, contact Mike Loizzo or David Radcliffe by midday Friday for the following week's issue.