A Leading Research-Intensive University in the Heart of Asia

Consistently ranked as one of the top universities in Asia and the world, NUS is internationally respected for its high-quality research in science, technology and the humanities — and, increasingly, at the interfaces between these areas.

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NUS' 17 Schools and Faculties, as well as its 26 university-level research institutes and centres, focus on critical issues confronting Asia and the world. The University is also home to three of Singapore’s five Research Centres of Excellence (RCEs) — specialising in quantum technologies, cancer and mechanobiology — and is a partner in a fourth RCE on environmental life sciences and engineering. Much of the research at NUS is integrated and multi-disciplinary in nature, with particular emphasis on themes such as integrated sustainability solutions for energy, water and the environment; ageing populations; biomedical sciences and translational medicine; global-Asian studies; finance and risk management; and, materials science.

News - 2017/2018

18 April 2018

Riches in the deep sea

A crab with fuzzy spines and blood-red eyes; skinny hermit crabs that live inside twigs and swollen sea anemones; a giant sea cockroach 30cm in length and a tulip-like sponge anchored to the ocean floor by a one-metre twisted tuft of glass fibres. These are just some examples of the more than 12,000 bizarre creatures belonging to 800 species discovered by the team of Singaporean and Indonesian scientists during the 14-day South Java Deep-Sea Biodiversity Expedition.


11 April 2018

$1.5m grant for novel, multidisciplinary work

An international team of scientists led by Professor Lim Chwee Teck, Principal Investigator (PI) at the NUS Mechanobiology Institute and NUS Biomedical Engineering, has been awarded the prestigious Human Frontiers Science Program (HFSP) Research Grant. The team will receive up to $1.58 million (US$1.2 million) in grants for their novel, multidisciplinary research investigating the collective migration of cells on curved surfaces such as those found on the skin or in the intestinal microvilli.


07 September 2017

New bird named after Indonesia's First Lady

A new bird species, the Rote Myzomela (Myzomela irianawidodoae) has been described to science by a joint Singapore-Indonesia team headed by Assistant Professor Frank Rheindt from NUS Biological Sciences and Dr Dewi Prawiradilaga from Indonesia’s government agency LIPI. The species was named after the First Lady of Indonesia Iriana Joko Widodo, in recognition of her longstanding interest in Indonesia’s bird life and advocacy for the country’s natural environment.


16 March 2018

Addressing healthcare challenges

Researchers from NUS and the National University Health System (NUHS) are part of two of the three teams that have been awarded $5.1 million in funding for up to three years through the Johnson & Johnson World Without Disease Grant Call Collaboration with Singapore’s Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR).

06 March 2018

Mussel Invasion

A research team from the Tropical Marine Science Institute (TMSI) at NUS has successfully identified the presence of an invasive mussel species in Singapore. Originally from the Atlantic and Pacific coast off South America and the Pacific coast off Central America, the mussel, identified as Mytella strigata, was found along the north-west coast of Singapore and on floating pontoons in the East Johor Straits.

21 February 2018

Drop me a drone

The Skyways Project, a collaboration between NUS and global aerospace giant Airbus Helicopters (Airbus) which aims to develop an aerial drone delivery system for dense urban environments, showed off its steady progress on 8 February as a drone took to the skies at NUS, successfully completing its first flight demonstration.

11 December 2017

Giant clams at risk

A comprehensive worldwide study of the status of giant clams by an international team of marine scientists, led by Dr Neo Mei Lin from the Tropical Marine Science Institute at NUS and Associate Professor Peter Todd from NUS Biological Sciences, has revealed that giant clams are facing a higher risk of extinction; the largest known species in particular.

08 December 2017

Quantum simulated butterfly

Researchers from the Centre for Quantum Technologies at NUS (CQT) teamed up with scientists at Google to successfully simulate the pattern of ‘Hofstader’s butterfly’ — a fractal structure characterising the splits and shifts of an electron’s energy levels with changes in magnetic field strength — using photons in Google’s quantum chip.

30 November 2017

Drink up the future

Researchers at Keio-NUS Connective Ubiquitous Technology for Embodiments (CUTE) Center have designed Vocktail (short for Virtual Cocktail), an interactive drinking utensil that digitally simulates distinct tastes, smells and colours to create new virtual flavours or augment existing flavours in order to achieve the ideal concoction, without the fuss of physically mixing beverages and ingredients.

06 November 2017

Fulfilling Asia Pacific energy needs

A new Singapore Energy Centre, a joint effort between NUS and Nanyang Technological University (NTU), will be launched in early 2019 to explore innovative ideas and develop talent to meet future energy needs in Asia Pacific. NUS signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) with ExxonMobil and NTU on 3 November, signifying ExxonMobil’s place as the first founding member of the new centre.

26 October 2017

Furthering global healthcare

NUS Biomedical Institute for Global Health Research and Technology (BIGHEART) and NUS Biomedical Engineering collaborated with the Korea Advanced Institute of Science and Technology (KAIST) to conduct a workshop on global healthcare on 16 October. The stimulating full-day programme discussed a range of research areas from bioinformatics and computational neuroscience to medical imaging and nanomedicine.

03 October 2017

Building urban resilience

NUSDeltares held its inaugural Singapore Centre on Urban Resilience (SeCURE) Symposium on 29 September which brought together local and international academics, practitioners and policymakers to discuss key challenges and solutions regarding urban resilience in Singapore and Southeast Asia.

07 September 2017

Engineering pharma innovation

The Agency for Science, Technology and Research (A*STAR) and NUS Engineering have inked a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with leading pharmaceutical companies GSK, MSD International, and Pfizer Asia Pacific to establish the Pharma Innovation Programme Singapore (PIPS) on 5 September. The partners will explore collaboration on pharma manufacturing technologies, supply chain management and operations.

02 August 2017

To conserve or convert?

NUS researchers have completed a global study identifying optimal areas for conservation and agriculture in the tropics. The team, led by Assistant Professor Roman Carrasco from NUS Biological Sciences, examined deforestation activities of more than 50 countries in the tropics between 2000 and 2012 to measure the trade-offs between the benefits provided by tropical forests and its conversion for agricultural use.

31 July 2017

Risk experts converge

The Lloyd's Register Foundation Institute for the Public Understanding of Risk (LRFI) at NUS held its inaugural conference on 27 July, which brought together global experts, policymakers, industry players and enthusiasts to share ideas and knowledge on risk perception, management and communication. The Institute was officially launched on 3 October 2016 to spearhead critical research on the understanding of risk and to change the risk communication landscape in Asia to allow for more informed decision-making for the betterment of society.

29 June 2017

A BIGHEART for global health

The Biomedical Institute for Global Health Research and Technology (BIGHEART) at NUS hosted its Inaugural Symposium on Healthcare Technology from 19 to 20 June, looking at innovative healthcare technology solutions of the future and providing a conducive environment for budding collaborations in the field. More than 280 delegates from industry, as well as research and medical backgrounds, attended the symposium.

15 June 2017

Advancing synthetic biology

“If you think about the number of organisms on the planet, which may indeed exceed the number of stars in the universe, you’ll realise that we’re all running on the same software language,” said Randal J Kirk, Chairman and CEO of synthetic biology company Intrexon Corp in his visionary lecture at the opening of The Seventh International Meeting on Synthetic Biology (SB7.0) on 13 June at the University Cultural Centre. This software language — DNA — was one of the main focuses of the meeting and the heart of the field itself.

09 May 2017

NUS profs clinch UK awards

Two NUS academics — NUS Geography Professor Henry Yeung and NUS Chemical & Biomolecular Engineering Assistant Professor Ning Yan — have received prestigious accolades by leading professional associations in the UK for outstanding contributions to their respective fields.

02 May 2017

Nanoparticles probe deeper

NUS Chemistry Professor Liu Xiaogang has led a multidisciplinary team of researchers from Singapore, Korea, China and the United States to develop a hybrid nanoparticle structure that brings promise of application in deep tissue bio-imaging and drug delivery. The results of this study were published in Advanced Materials in March.

11 April 2017

Found: New tree-climbing crabs

Professor Peter Ng from the Lee Kong Chian Natural History Museum was part of a research team which identified and described an exciting new genus and species of crabs which live exclusively in trees in Kerala, India. Published in Journal of Crustacean Biology on 3 April, this study is the first to provide report on a crab that spends its entire life in trees.

03 April 2017

DPM Teo visits Keio-NUS CUTE Center

National Research Foundation (NRF) Singapore Chairman and Deputy Prime Minister Teo Chee Hean was introduced to an array of innovative projects when he visited the Keio-NUS Connective Ubiquitous Technology for Embodiments (CUTE) Center on 15 March. He was accompanied on the visit by representatives from NRF, NUS and the Public Service Division.

31 March 2017

Unmasking the Temple Pitviper

A proposal by NUS Biological Sciences researchers to sequence the genome of the Temple Pitviper has been selected as one of the five finalists — out of more than 200 entries globally and the only entry from Asia — in the 2017 Plant and Animal SMRT Grant Program. Supporters can vote for their favourite project once a day from now till 5 April.

09 February 2017

Don't give rocky shores a wide berth

Prof Stephen Hawkins, an expert on rocky shores from the University of Southampton in Britain, visited NUS under the National University of Singapore Society Professorship programme, and was hosted by the Dept of Biological Sciences (DBS) at NUS Faculty of Science. Prof Hawkins shared his studies on rocky shore habitats, and noted that while rocky shores are widely studied in temperate regions, there is scant data on them and how they function in the tropics. Researchers under Assoc Prof Peter Todd, who is from the DBS, are embarking on projects to learn more about these habitats.

18 January 2017

Becoming a successful scientist

NUS was abuzz with scintillating discussion when three Nobel Laureates — Professor Aaron Ciechanover, Sir Andre Geim and Sir Timothy Hunt — shared their thoughts on how scientists could be successful during a panel discussion at the NUS Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine on 16 January. Held in conjunction with Global Young Scientists [email protected] 2017, the event was moderated by Professor Barry Halliwell, Senior Advisor to NUS President, and Tan Chin Tuan Centennial Professor.

16 January 2017

Harnessing data analytics for smoother commutes

You can be sure that when a leading global university, an e-commerce giant and a major operator of contactless stored value cards come together, big things will happen — big data analytics to be exact. Earlier this month, a collaboration was formed between NUS; Alibaba Cloud, the cloud computing arm of Alibaba Group; and EZ-Link, Singapore’s largest issuer of Contactless e-Purse Application (CEPAS) compliant cards.

11 January 2017

NUS researcher named TED Fellow

Marine biologist and Research Fellow Dr Neo Mei Lin from the Tropical Marine Science Institute at NUS has been selected as a TED Fellow, joining the newest class of 15 change-makers from around the world. She is the only Singaporean to make the prestigious list this year. Founded in 2009, the TED Fellows programme brings together young innovators across disciplines who display outstanding achievement, exemplary character and an innovative approach to solving the world’s tough problems.

05 January 2017

App brings images to life

NUS Computing Associate Professor Zhao Shengdong’s app SketchBook Motion, which allows users to add elements of motion to otherwise static illustrations, has been named one of Apple’s “Best of 2016” iPad apps. The app features tools such as Beeline, Grow and Particle that produce movement quickly and easily, allowing users to add depth and emotion to their creations. It was developed based on a research paper published in 2014 together with his former PhD student Dr Rubaiat Habib and collaborators from the University of Toronto and Autodesk Research.

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