37 early-career faculty members earn Johns Hopkins Catalyst Awards

Honorees representing dozens of fields receive $75,000 each to support their work

Thirty-seven talented early-career faculty members representing all nine academic divisions of the university will receive 2023 Johns Hopkins Catalyst Awards.

This year's Catalyst Award recipients include faculty researching global methane emissions, how the gut microbiome could treat HIV-associated psychiatric symptoms, topological stars and their observables, and ancient healing arts. One awardee is exploring the relationship between extreme heat and city-resourced cooling centers on violence in Baltimore City. Another recipient is challenging our understanding of deep neural networks by characterizing the statistical structure of their latent representations.

These experts represent 27 departments—including Dermatology, Environmental Health & Engineering, International Economics, Music Theory, and Neurosurgery.

"The freedom and the courage to pursue bold, transformative ideas for the greater good are the beating heart of the academic enterprise and our mission as an institution," says Johns Hopkins University President Ron Daniels. "This year's Catalyst Awards will once again support brilliant early-career faculty across fields and disciplines to follow their most audacious ideas wherever they may lead and them on a path for future growth here at Hopkins."

"Our 2023 selections have charted plans for cutting-edge research and inquiry that we believe will propel their fields and Johns Hopkins into the future."
Denis Wirtz
Vice provost for research

The 2023 honorees—selected on the basis of their accomplishments to date, creativity and originality, and academic impact—will each receive a $75,000 grant to support their work over the next year. They also will have the opportunity to participate in mentoring sessions and events designed to connect these colleagues at similar stages in their careers.

The Catalyst Awards program was launched in early 2015, as was the Discovery Awards program for interdivisional collaborations. Together the two programs represent a $45 million university commitment to faculty-led research by university leadership along with the deans and directors of JHU's divisions.

The Catalyst Awards program is open to any full-time faculty member appointed to a tenure-track position within the past three to 10 years. Faculty from across the university served on the committee that selected the awardees from a pool of 110 submissions.

This is the eighth year of the program, which has now recognized a total of 281 high-potential faculty from all divisions of the institution.

"Every year, we're blown away by the innovation evident in the Catalyst Awards proposals," says Denis Wirtz, JHU's vice provost for research. "Our 2023 selections have charted plans for cutting-edge research and inquiry that we believe will propel their fields and Johns Hopkins into the future. We look forward to working with them as they reach new milestones that transform the trajectory of their careers."

2023 Johns Hopkins Catalyst Award recipients: