Research & Graduate Studies

Bringing the Future into Focus Through Research

Portland State University is your testing ground for putting new ideas into action. As Oregon’s only urban, public research university, we believe in involving everyone—from freshmen to faculty—in solving the problems facing our region and our world. Because the only way to bridge the gap between what is and what could be is together.

Fueling PSU Research

Fueling PSU Research

Research Administration provides the information and resources PSU researchers need for sponsored projects. Support includes funding opportunities and expert assistance with proposal preparation, award management, training, data security, export controls, and the rules and procedures for studies involving human or animal subjects.

Engineering project

Propel Your Ideas

PSU researchers create ideas, technologies, and innovative programs to meet 21st-century challenges. Propel PSU drives the impact of these innovations further with entrepreneurship and commercialization programming from the Portland State Business Accelerator, the Center for Entrepreneurship, and Innovation & Intellectual Property. 

Research Centers & Institutes

Research Centers & Institutes

Our research centers are on the cutting edge, with breakthrough discoveries in fields that include: digital cities, transportation, sustainability, and solutions to homelessness. Our researchers take a multidisciplinary approach to pioneering new territories and leading the way to address the major challenges facing our city, region, and world.

Graduate School

Go for Groundbreaking in PSU Graduate Studies

Lead your own research projects and advance your career in Portland State’s nationally ranked graduate programs. Top national researchers will mentor and inspire you in state-of-the-art laboratories and community projects. Challenge the status quo and make progress across fields such as social sciences, urban planning, engineering, and life sciences. Our graduate research programs give you the chance to improve your life and the lives of others.

Student researcher

Undergraduates show the world how

You can dig deep in your major, grow your research skills and address real-world issues as an undergraduate at Portland State. In programs such as Build EXITO, the Ronald E. McNair Scholars Program, and Research Experiences for Undergraduates, you can work with world-class faculty mentors on leading-edge projects. You’ll find undergraduate research and learning opportunities in every field, for every student. Explore undergraduate research.

Growing Research

Upcoming events

Captions and Corpses: How to read an EC Comic

Join PSU's Comics Studies program for a talk with Professor Qiana Whitted…
Add to my Calendar 2021-04-15 23:30:00 2021-04-14 03:53:19 Captions and Corpses: How to read an EC Comic Join PSU's Comics Studies program for a talk with Professor Qiana Whitted. In her talk, Prof. Qiana Whitted draws from her recent book on EC Comics: Race, Shock, and Social Protest to explore the 1950s publisher’s effort to distinguish between “entertaining” and “educational” reading practices that were mindful of the public’s anxieties over how comic books could influence young readers. Her discussion will consider the ways that EC’s writers and artists arranged the verbal and visual dynamics of the comics page to steer the potential impact of notorious crime and horror titles such “The Whipping” and “The Guilty.” Evaluating these creative choices raises important questions about the taboo combination of explicitness, incredulity, and reading pleasure that EC branded as “shock comics," engaging complex social messages amid the thrills and chills.Qiana Whitted is professor of English and African American Studies at the University of South Carolina. A graduate of Hampton University with a PhD from Yale University, her research and teaching focus on Black literary and cultural studies, and American comics and graphic novels. She is the author of the Eisner Award-winning book, EC Comics: Race, Shock, and Social Protest and co-editor of the collection on Comics and the U.S. South. Many of her published essays explore race, genre, and identity in comics representations of historical figures such as Nat Turner, Stagger Lee, and Emmett Till. She is currently editing a collection of essays on blackness in early American comics. She is also the editor of Inks: The Journal of the Comics Studies Society and chair of the International Comic Arts Forum. REGISTER FOR WEBINAR Remote America/Los_Angeles public

Adapting to the Era of Megafires: A Community & Expert…

Wildfire ravaged much of the western United States in 2020. Towns were…
Add to my Calendar 2021-04-21 10:00:00 2021-04-21 11:00:00 Adapting to the Era of Megafires: A Community & Expert Summit on Catastrophic Wildfire in Oregon and Beyond Wildfire ravaged much of the western United States in 2020. Towns were destroyed, homes and businesses evacuated, forests incinerated, and lives lost. In Oregon, vast swaths of rural communities like Talent and Detroit were devastated by sweeping megafires. But every Oregonian was impacted by widespread evacuations, life-threatening smoke, damage to vineyards and other crops, and staggering costs siphoning critical tax dollars away from other essential public services. As with all matters related to climate change, the greatest impacts were on our most vulnerable communities: low-income families, communities of color, the sick, the elderly, and the young.    These megafires also accelerated their climate effects, with carbon emissions from wildfires in the U.S. alone increasing 30% over the previous year. The 2020 season was the latest record-breaking year in the West, continuing a 20-year trend that is only worsening. But there is hope. As wildfire impacts broaden, so has the coalition of parties seeking solutions. Small town mayors and tribal leaders, experts in public health and social justice, CEOs and scientists are speaking up. World Forestry Center is convening representatives from this broadening coalition in a five-part virtual summit focused on the Oregon example. Matt Donegan, chair of the Oregon Governor’s Council on Wildfire Response, will be joined by community leaders Charles Wilhoite and Katrina Holland, to lead this series of virtual talks.   We will hear from community leaders to understand the full impacts of megafires on our state and our region; discuss real solutions shaped by decades of experience across the globe; and address barriers to achieving these solutions.  This free public series is for anyone who cares about the health of our society, our environment, or our economy. Catastrophic wildfire impacts us all. But together we can end the era of megafires. Interested in Attending Tickets for this free, five-part virtual event are now available. Reserve Your Ticket to the Series Episodes Episode 1: Understanding the Era of Megafires and the Threat Ahead, 4/14 Panel Participants Dr. Paul Hessburg (United States Forest Service) Russ Hoeflich (1,000 Friends of Oregon) Dr. Werner Kurz (Canadian Forest Service) Episode 2: Protecting People: Creating Fire-Adapted Communities, 4/21 Panel Participants Mayor Sally Russell (City of Bend) Oregon Rep. Pam Marsh (D-Ashland) Oregon Sen. Lynn Findley (R-Vale) Commissioner Mark Bennett (Baker County, Oregon) Episode 3: Protecting Forests: Building Resilient Landscapes, 4/28 Panel Participants Dr. Chris Dunn (Oregon State University) Susan Jane Brown (Western Environmental Law Center) Nils Christoffersen (Wallowa Resources) Bobby Brunoe (Confederated Tribes of the Warm Springs) Episode 4: Protecting Firefighters: Responding Safely and Effectively to Wildfire, 5/5 Panel Participants Mariana Ruiz-Temple (Oregon State Fire Marshal) Travis Medema (Oregon State Fire Marshal) Doug Grafe (Oregon Department of Forestry) Oregon Rep. Lily Morgan (R-Grants Pass) Episode 5: Building a Movement and Implementing Solutions, 5/12 Governor Kate Brown (Oregon) U.S. Senator Jeff Merkley (Oregon) U.S. Senator Ron Wyden (Oregon) Dean Takahashi (Yale Carbon Containment Lab) Anastasia O’Rourke (Yale Carbon Containment Lab) Oregon Sen. Lew Frederick (D-Portland) Virtual Summit - Reserve Your Ticket: America/Los_Angeles public

2021 NSF Engineering CAREER Proposal Writing Workshop

The 2021 NSF Engineering CAREER Proposal Writing Workshop will be held …
Add to my Calendar 2021-04-22 11:00:00 2021-04-22 14:00:00 2021 NSF Engineering CAREER Proposal Writing Workshop The 2021 NSF Engineering CAREER Proposal Writing Workshop will be held VIRTUALLY April 21-23, 2021, from 1:00PM to 5:00PM ET each day. The workshop aims to provide junior faculty who plan to submit a CAREER proposal to a program in the NSF Directorate for Engineering (ENG) with a CAREER proposal review experience and a forum in which they can interact with NSF Program Directors and recent NSF CAREER awardees. Attendees of the 2021 NSF ENG CAREER Proposal Writing Workshop will benefit from: Mock proposal reviews by panels Interactions with ENG Directorate Program Directors Focus sessions with recent CAREER awardees Interaction across disciplines and engineering schools nationwide All activities for the 2021 NSF ENG CAREER Proposal Writing Workshop will be conducted virtually.  The Mock Panel Review session is limited to 300 participants; however, all other sessions will be open. Mock Panel participants will be selected from those who submit completed applications. The deadline for applications is February 19, 2021.  Visit for details. About the NSF CAREER ProgramCAREER: The Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) Program is a Foundation-wide activity that offers the National Science Foundation's most prestigious awards in support of early-career faculty who have the potential to serve as academic role models in research and education and to lead advances in the mission of their department or organization. Activities pursued by early-career faculty should build a firm foundation for a lifetime of leadership in integrating education and research. NSF encourages submission of CAREER proposals from early-career faculty at all CAREER-eligible organizations and especially encourages women, members of underrepresented minority groups, and persons with disabilities to apply.  About the Directorate for Engineering  Investments in engineering research and education are critical building blocks for the nation's future prosperity. Engineering breakthroughs address national challenges, such as smart manufacturing, resilient infrastructure and sustainable energy systems. Engineering also brings about new opportunities in areas ranging from advanced photonics to prosthetic devices. Research funded by the NSF Directorate for Engineering has enriched the understanding of natural systems, enhanced electronics, fortified the nation's infrastructure and introduced the exciting possibilities of engineering to the next generation. Meeting Type Workshop Contacts 2021 NSF ENG CAREER Workshop organizers, NSF Related Organizations Directorate for Engineering Division of Electrical, Communications and Cyber Systems Division of Chemical, Bioengineering, Environmental and Transport Systems Division of Civil, Mechanical and Manufacturing Innovation Emerging Frontiers and Multidisciplinary Activities Engineering Education and Centers Industrial Innovation and Partnerships Related ProgramsFaculty Early Career Development Program Related Websites 2021 NSF ENG CAREER Proposal Writing Workshop: NSF (virtual) America/Los_Angeles public

@ This Moment: Decolonizing Anthropology

Faculty members from our Anthropology Department explore the discipline's…
Add to my Calendar 2021-04-22 23:00:00 2021-04-14 12:03:28 @ This Moment: Decolonizing Anthropology Faculty members from our Anthropology Department explore the discipline's colonial histories and more recent efforts to decolonize anthropology within different subfields, as well as concrete approaches the department is adopting toward equity and inclusion. Panelists: Charles Klein, chair and associate professor, medical anthropology Mrinalini Tankha, assistant professor, economic anthropology Shelby Anderson, associate professor, archaeology Melanie Chang, adjunct professor, biological anthropology Jeremy Spoon, associate professor, environmental anthropology Register for the webinar. The @ This Moment series provides a space for our researchers to share their work with the community and help provide context for better understanding and responding to this moment in history.  Remote America/Los_Angeles public