The California NanoSystems Institute should play the leading
role in the advancement of nanoscale science and engineering,
noted nanotechnology researcher Stan Williams said at the
institute's groundbreaking last week.
The research center, one of four new University of California
Institutes for Science and Innovation, is aimed at developing
the nanotechnological advances that will dominate science
and the economy in the 21st century.
Williams, who leads nanotechnology research at HP Labs, said this emerging field can create huge scientific
and economic opportunities.
"Nano-engineering has the potential to greatly improve
the properties of nearly every material object manufactured
by humans, and will lead to the creation of new medicines,
materials and devices that will substantially improve the
health, wealth and security of the world's people" he
said. Williams, an HP Senior Fellow, is a past winner of the
prestigious Feynmann Prize in Nanotechnology.
Williams joined California Governor Gray Davis, UC President
Richard Atkinson, UCLA Chancellor Albert Carnesale and other
officials on the campus of the University of California Los
Angeles to inaugurate the 184,712-square-foot research and
education center, which is scheduled for completion in winter
Williams said he hopes the institute will help California
and the United States provide global leadership in the emerging
field of nanotechnology. Currently, the U.S. invests less
than 20 percent of the worldwide funding for nanotechnology
So how can the California NanoSystems Institute (CNSI) lead
the world? "To be bolder and smarter than anyone else,"
He urged the CNSI to resist the tempation to create a curriculum
"in which each student learns a little bit of everything,"
and instead to insist that each student become very deep within
a particular area but able to communicate with people from
In addition, Williams said the institute will require new
models of collaboration for academic, government and industry
researchers that enables them to complement each other and
leverage their capabilities.
"Finally, the CNSI must simply lead," he said.
"The only acceptable goal for a major research institute
in the greater university system in the world is to be the
by Jamie Beckett