About Centers and Institutes

The University of Minnesota is home to over 300 research, education, and outreach centers and institutes. This listing will help you identify, learn about, and contact these units.

Interested in partnering with a center or institute? Please contact the Office for Public Engagement.

Center and Institute staff needing to make updates to this list, please contact centers@umn.edu.

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Particle Technology Laboratory

The Particle Technology Laboratory is one of the leading centers of small particle research in the U.S.  PTL is well-known for its instrumentation development activities. Instruments for particle generation, measurement, sampling and analysis in the range of 0.002 to 100 µm have been developed. Research has been incorporated into codes and standards by NIST, ASTM, ASHRAE, EPA, and ISO, etc.  Major facilities of the Laboratory include 15,000 square feet of general laboratory space, and 500 sq. ft. of class 100 cleanroom space; wind tunnel, filter testing, and vacuum facilities; instruments for particle generation, measurement, sampling and analysis in the 0.002 to 100 µm diameter range; and microscopes, electron microbalances, gas analyzers, anemometry and other laboratory instruments.  The estimated value of the laboratory instrumentation is in excess of $3 million.  The Laboratory also offers an annual Aerosol and Particle Measurement Shortcourse for training professionals from industry, university and government laboratories.

Last updated: July 29, 2015

Personalized Medicine, Institute of

A distinctive research group of investigators from various disciplines dedicated to advance the field of pharmacogenomics to help prescribe right medicine at the right dose and thus improve the safety and efficacy of currently prescribed medications.

Campus and College: College of Pharmacy (Twin Cities)
+ 612 624 6118
Last updated: July 11, 2017

Philosophy of Science, Minnesota Center for

The mission of the Minnesota Center for Philosophy of Science is to promote excellence in research and training in philosophy of science, related empirical studies of science, and science itself. Its primary objectives are:

  1. to maintain Minnesota’s preeminence in the philosophy of science and use this standing to lead philosophy of science in new directions, as well as have an impact on the direction of science itself by influencing scientists’ reflective understanding of scientific inquiry and knowledge;
  2. to nurture a multiplicity of intellectual groups that transcend the boundaries between philosophy and the sciences, and to use these groups to advance research, graduate training, and undergraduate education at the University of Minnesota; and
  3. to conduct local and international research projects, the most important results of which are published in journals and anthologies, including Minnesota Studies.
(administrative contact) Janet McKernan
+1 612 625 6635
Last updated: July 29, 2015

Physical Sciences in Oncology Center

The UMN Physical Sciences in Oncology Center (PSOC) is a new research center led by the UMN Department of Biomedical Engineering.  It is catalyzing and nucleating engineering-based oncology research in order to:

  • Better understand the physical mechanisms of cancer, and
  • Speed the development of new diagnostics and therapeutic strategies that improve patient outcomes.

The PSOC is funded by a five-year grant from the National Cancer Institute and is part of the 10 center Physical Sciences in Oncology Network.

(Director) Dave Odde
(administrative contact) Bo Connelly
+ 612 624 7352
Last updated: September 20, 2017

Political Psychology, Center for the Study of

Political psychology involves research on political belief systems, political attitudes and behavior and, more recently, on political information processing and cognition. Political psychology also focuses increasingly on the role of affect and emotion and their link to political cognition and behavior.

+1 612 624 0864
Last updated: February 23, 2017

Politics and Governance, Center for the Study of

Under the leadership of nationally prominent political scientist Lawrence Jacobs, the Center for the Study of Politics and Governance (CSPG) develops practical, independent, and non-partisan solutions to pressing political and policy challenges. Founded in 2005, CSPG fosters effective and efficient governance, increases the transparency of government processes, and rebuilds the public trust in order to counteract negative influences that threaten our democracy.  One of the unique strengths of the center is that it brings together three critical components of public governance today: objective, high-quality analysis, publicly visible forums, and civic engagement. Through collaboration across the public, nonprofit and private sectors, the center generates new knowledge about policy and politics, convenes public events that stimulate vigorous debate, and inspires current and emerging leaders to engage in the creation of innovative approaches to addressing the vital policy issues of our time.

(administrative contact) Lea Chittenden
+1 612 625 2530
Last updated: January 16, 2015

Pre-Cambrian Research Center

The primary mission of the PRC is to address the growing demand for well-trained field geologists by providing education and support to upper-level undergraduate students, graduate students, and professional geologists in modern methods of geological mapping and map-making in glaciated Precambrian terrains. The PRC is managed as a collaborative effort between two geosciences institutions at the University of Minnesota Duluth - the Natural Resources Research Institute and the Department of Geological Sciences. Training in field methods particularly suited to Precambrian terranes is provide through a variety of PRC programs including Precambrian summer field camp, professional workshops, graduate student advising, and various mapping and Precambrian geology courses offered at UMD. Instructors for these programs include a consortium of experienced Precambrian field geologists from the Natural Resources Research Institute and the Department of Geological Sciences, as well as from the Minnesota Geological Survey, from other academic and governmental institutions, and from private industry.

Campus and College: Duluth
+1 218 720 4355
Last updated: January 16, 2015

Precision Agriculture Center

The Center`s efforts emphasize multidisciplinary research and instruction in precision agriculture, including spatial and temporal variability, GIS, remote sensing, sensors, and conservation practices for environmental protection. Research partners come from a cross-section of departments and academic instutions, as well as agricultural industries including equipment and chemical manufacturers, cooperatives, retailers, and food processors.

+1 612 625 6721
Last updated: July 29, 2015

PRIME Institute

The PRIME Institute is an independent and global research, education and consulting organization at the University whose mission is the study of the economic and policy issues to help improve popular access to pharmaceuticals and pharmaceutical services. Research interests encompass a broad range of topics related to pharmaceuticals and public policy including: a) monitoring trends and economic indicators in the pharmaceutical market (consumers, pharmacists, pharmacies, pharmaceutical firms, managed care organizations, and pharmaceutical benefits managers); b) evaluation of the design and impact of pharmaceutical benefit plans; c) assessment of factors influencing access to, and affordability of, medicine, d) characterization of competitive and economic factors in the pharmaceutical market; and e) pharmacoeconomic studies of pharmaceutical products and services.

(administrative contact) Tola Ou-Quinlan
+1 612 624 9931
Last updated: July 29, 2015

Public and Nonprofit Leadership Center

The Public and Nonprofit Leadership Center (PNLC) is a community that creates and nurtures excellence in public affairs management and leadership.  We cultivate adaptive, transformative leaders, connecting technical knowledge with real leadership insight, informed by the latest research. We improve public affairs management and leadership for the common good.  We support a learning environment focused on enriching leadership and management through practices that engages others and cross boundaries.  The study and practice of leadership and management have value in and of themselves. Our work can be applied across organizational, geographic, and societal boundaries.

(administrative contact) Mary Maronde
+1 612 625 5093
Last updated: January 16, 2015

Public Health Education and Outreach, Centers for

The Centers serve as an intersection between the University's School of Public Health and the community, and provide an on-going presence and infrastructure to support education for public health professionals throughout the region. The goal of the Centers is to work with the community and public health faculty to help develop and strengthen the public health workforce and prepare for future public health challenges through education.

Campus and College: Twin Cities, School of Public Health
(administrative contact) Mary Ellen Nerney
+1 612 626 4515
Last updated: January 16, 2015