Technology-Inspired Health Innovation at Illinois

The future of Illinois health innovation and education

On June 20, 2022, Chancellor Robert Jones charged a Health Innovation Visioning Committee to propose the future role of the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign as a pioneer in establishing a new technology-driven academic health research and education model that makes a significant, visible, and sustained impact on human health.

The committee worked to gather broad input from the campus community through various discussions, Town Hall meetings, and an online input form. This input was incorporated into a white paper report for the Chancellor in January of 2023.


A mission-driven research and education model

Human health exists across multiple dimensions, with grand challenges related to healthcare access and equity, nutrition, mental health, aging, global health, environmental health, and more. Illinois will address these challenges with a mission-driven research and education model.

A new Institute for Health Innovation 

The physical embodiment of this new model for technology-inspired health innovation will be a new Institute for Health Innovation (IHI) – an evolution and visioning growth of the previously envisioned Translational Research Facility. The Interdisciplinary Health Sciences Institute (IHSI) will be reimagined and integrated with the IHI.


IHI as the driver of the mission-based model

The IHI will serve as a centralized physical hub for driving missions that will reach broadly across campus. Faculty, students, staff, and partners will unite via their missions across five cores that carry the mission forward from idea to impact.

  • Education: Work toward theme and mission-based degrees

  • Research: Emphasize support for team-based research

  • Community engagement: Identify and engage local partners

  • Partnerships: Collaborate to drive real-world application

  • Entrepreneurial translation: Move innovation to impact

graphic of a hub-spoke-rim with IHI as the center hub, various missions as the spokes, and campus units, centers, programs and resources as well as health, industry and translational partners as the rim.
The hub-spokes-rim model. IHI serves as the hub, with multiple missions serving as the spokes that connect with all the campus units, programs, and resources, as well as external health, industry, and translational partners to advance technology-inspired health innovation at Illinois.

Intellectual capital

Cluster faculty hiring will intentionally seek to address diversity and equity goals and include both tenure-track and specialized faculty positions at both junior and senior ranks, with home units broadly across campus. The initial cluster hiring plan will focus on expertise in technology-inspired health innovation, broadly defined and not limited to a particular college, with future cluster hiring searches aligning with the defined themes and missions.

Professional staffing

Professional mission managers will be recruited, hired, and supported to operationalize the missions. They will coordinate between and within the five cores integrated into each mission and ensure communications between multiple interdisciplinary units. 

graphic showing how mission managers connect across five columns representing Research, Education, Community, Partnerships, and Translation
Relationship of health challenge missions to the five cores in the proposed model for technology inspired health innovation at Illinois. Each mission will progress through and include all five of the core areas, leading to definitive outcomes and sustained impact. Dedicated mission managers will oversee the progression.

A bold step for Illinois

Our health, and the societal benefits of technological innovation, are both personal and evident. Foundational to this vision is our land grant mission to improve the human condition and all of humanity.


Read the Full White Paper Report:

A New Model for Technology-Inspired Health Innovation, Research, and Education
for the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign

  Get Full Report

Questions? Please reach out at

Committee Members

Stephen Boppart, Chair

Kraig Wagenecht, Project Manager
OVCRI ex officio

Rohit Bhargava

Martin Burke
LAS (Chemistry)

Ryan Dilger
ACES (Animal Sciences)

Sharon Donovan
IGB, Personalized Nutrition Initiative, ACES (Nutritional Sciences)

Martha Gillette
Neuroscience Program, LAS (Cell & Developmental Biology)

Rosalba Hernandez
Social Work

Elizabeth Hsiao-Wecksler

Halil Kilicoglu

Ruby Mendenhall
CI MED, LAS (Sociology)

Jeff Moore
LAS (Chemistry)

Eva Pomerantz
CSBS, LAS (Psychology)

Wendy Rogers
AHS (Kinesiology and Community Health)

Carin Vanderpool
Vet Med, LAS (Microbiology)

Amy Wagoner Johnson

Neal Cohen
LAS (Psychology) ex officio

Paulanne Jushkevich
OVCIA ex officio

Susan Koshy
LAS (English), OVCRI/IHSI Faculty Fellow ex officio

Melanie Loots
ex officio

Gillian Snyder
IHSI ex officio

Bridget Melton
IHSI Communications Support

Kacey Nelson
IHSI Graphic Design Support

Leta Summers
IHSI Administrative Support