Tanju Karanfil

A Culture of Curiosity and Collaboration


Tanju Karanfil

In the past decade, Clemson University’s research enterprise has significantly expanded, culminating with our inclusion among the nation’s most active Carnegie R1 research institutions. As I evaluate what has driven this success, it is pretty clear: our culture. Our faculty members, students and staff are driven by curiosity and are passionate about making positive contributions to the world. We are challenging concepts, exploring new ideas and collaborating across disciplines and institutions in our pursuit for meaningful, significant scholarship and discovery.

Our scientists are engineering yeast to make pharmaceuticals and biofuels more sustainably, while working closely with NASA to equip astronauts for deeper space exploration. They are developing novel techniques that use targeted pulses of light to explore brain function and treat disease. They are designing new technologies for safe, interconnected multimodal transportation systems and autonomous vehicles, but they aren’t stopping there — they are testing these new systems to ensure their security against cyberthreats. Clemson scientists have spent 30 years analyzing the ecological effects of Hurricane Hugo to help the world better recover from future natural disasters. They have played a key role in a program that is sparing infants the pain of opioid withdrawal.

I invite you to explore these stories and others throughout this magazine and visit for even more content online.

This is just the tip of the iceberg of research at Clemson. The best is yet to come.


Tanju Karanfil
Vice President for Research