While the global pandemic posed numerous problems, Columbia's scientific communities still found ways to continue their groundbreaking research this year, with many pivoting their focus and lending their expertise to the fight against COVID-19. From the announcement of a new Climate School to the discovery of an emerging megadrought in the western U.S., to taking engineering insights from nature itself, the University continued to serve as a leader in Earth Sciences, quite apt given that 2020 marked the 50th anniversary of Earth Day. In this week's Columbia News Spotlight, we take a look back at the many ways Columbia researchers pushed the envelope this year.
Unsurprisingly, Columbia's field-leading work on the COVID-19 pandemic generated the most buzz on Columbia News. Notably, David Brenner's work on Far-UVC light has shown promise as game-changing technology. Read More
Astronomer David Kipping tackled humanity's biggest question, using Bayesian statistics to show how life might evolve in alien worlds. Kipping's analysis suggests "the case for a universe teeming with life emerges as the favored bet." See If They're Out There
Climate change could prove costly for wine lovers, according to Earth Institute research that found that as temperatures rise and seasons change, the regions of the world that are suitable for growing wine grapes could shrink by half or more. Pour One Out
A multidisciplinary team from Columbia Engineering and Vanderbilt University has demonstrated that severely injured donor lungs that have been declined for transplant can be recovered outside the body. Read More
Two undergraduates at the Zuckerman Institute explored the implications that tangled-up proteins could have for Alzheimer’s disease. Their collaboration culminated in the research getting published in a top neuroscience journal. Watch Now
Throughout the pandemic, mental health has been a major concern. Anthony Puliafico gave advice on self-care and managing anxiety in children. Columbia continues to offer extensive crisis resources for coping with COVID-19. Read Now
Ahead of the holiday shopping rush, Sandra Goldmark's new book explains how people, businesses, and policy makers can build an economy that encourages us to repair what we have, instead of replacing things.Read More