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New Idaho EPSCoR director named

August 1, 2019
Josh Babcock, University of Idaho

A statewide effort to boost research capabilities at universities and colleges throughout Idaho will soon be led by a new director. University of Idaho Professor Andrew Kliskey, a leader in researching how communities adapt with changing environments, will serve as the next director of the Idaho Established Program to Stimulate Competitive Research (EPSCoR), effective Aug. 18, 2019.

Idaho EPSCoR, funded largely by the National Science Foundation (NSF), is a collaborative statewide program led by U of I that aims to stimulate Gem State research and involves each of Idaho’s public research universities as well as many of its two-year and four-year colleges.

Kliskey, pending anticipated approval from the NSF, will also take over leadership of Idaho’s newest five-year, $24 million NSF EPSCoR Research Infrastructure Improvement award, $4 million of which is contributed by the state.

That effort, announced in September, focuses on developing a better understanding of how the genetic makeup of animals and plants allows them to fundamentally adapt to changing environments and will support research, education and workforce development at Idaho’s institutions of higher learning.

“The Idaho EPSCoR program is excellent and I will endeavor to elevate that excellence by working with the strong and diverse team of faculty, staff and students across Boise State University, Idaho State University, U of I and the primarily undergraduate colleges in Idaho, along with the industry, tribal and government partners,” Kliskey said.

Originally from New Zealand, Kliskey, the director of the U of I Center for Resilient Communities, spent many years working with rural communities in New Zealand, Alaska and Idaho.

“Kliskey’s uniquely deep and wide experience with high quality research will prove a valuable asset to Idaho,” said Laird Noh, EPSCoR committee chair and former Idaho senator.

Kliskey received a doctorate in geography from the University of Otago, New Zealand, holds a master’s in regional and resource planning and bachelor’s in surveying from the University of Otago.

He joined U of I in 2013 as a professor of rangeland and fire sciences in the College of Natural Resources; and landscape architecture and bioregional planning in the College of Art and Architecture.

“I have been honored to serve as the interim director and am delighted to welcome Andy Kliskey as the new director of this important statewide position,” Vice President for Research and Economic Development Janet E. Nelson said. “Andy is an accomplished scientist and administrator. I look forward to the continued success of the Idaho EPSCoR program under his leadership.”

Nelson has served as interim EPSCoR director since fall 2017.

“I am excited to be taking on the statewide responsibility of Idaho EPSCoR director, to be able to help enhance research competitiveness across Idaho and to be able to contribute to the co-production of scientific knowledge that serves Idaho’s communities,” Kliskey said.

Author Credit: This story was written by Josh Babcock, University of Idaho content coordinator.


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