The University of Chicago is establishing a professorship in molecular engineering dedicated to the development of solutions to the emerging crisis on the global supply of clean water. The new position will enhance the Institute for Molecular Engineering’s innovative partnership on clean water technologies with Ben-Gurion University of the Negev.

A donation from Chicago philanthropists James and Paula Crown will support the Crown Family Professor and director of the Water Research Initiative in the Institute for Molecular Engineering. The institute is seeking to recruit a leading figure in water resources engineering at the molecular level to the new professorship.

The Crown Family Professor will then lead the institute’s water investigations, which include purification via membranes, biotechnology and catalysis, and efficient use of water in agriculture. The initiative also supports collaborations with Argonne National Laboratory and the Marine Biological Laboratory, both of which are operated by the University of Chicago. Together with the Ben-Gurion partnership, these efforts aim to use nanotechnology discoveries to make clean, fresh water more plentiful and less expensive by 2020…

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