Emerging Technologies

New technologies are changing the way research is done across the world. Researchers at WID are actively developing emerging technologies and applying them to research questions and real-world problems in innovative ways. Research in emerging technologies at WID spans biology, medicine, social science, data science, and more.

WID is also developing an Emerging Technologies Hub created by experts in the areas of virtual reality (VR), augmented reality (AR), 3D capture, game development, computer graphics, visualization, art, 3D reconstruction, and public displays to extend creative networks for discovery.

Virtual Reality
We create novel and natural interfaces for immersive virtual environments and develop methods, techniques, and tools to improve virtual reality.

CRISPR-Cas9
We are using and improving the CRISPR-Cas9 gene editing system to make precise changes to DNA and developing treatments for myriad diseases and conditions.

Nanomedicine
We are creating and deploying novel nanomaterials for delivery of drugs, gene editing tools, and other technologies in medical contexts.

Machine Learning
We apply machine learning to large quantities of data using algorithms to build analytical models and helping computers “learn” from data with exciting new applications.


Slide Faculty on the Cutting Edge See all WID Faculty Faculty in emerging fields are developing and applying new technologies to basic research problems and real-world challenges. Their innovations are supported by WID's collaborative environment. Shaoqin (Sarah) Gong Biomedical Engineering Daniel Pimentel-Alarcon Biostatistics & Medical Informatics Kevin Ponto Kevin Ponto Design Studies Krishanu Saha Biomedical Engineering Karen Schloss Psychology

WID alumnus awarded first AAAS Science & Technology Policy Fellowship in the U.S. Department of the Treasury WID News WID and Saha Lab alumnus, and current postdoc at the Morgridge Institute for Research, Amritava Das anticipates that he will put his engineering and bioscience training to use exploring the sometimes knotty connections between science, national security, and finance. Continue Reading Researchers use virtual reality to demonstrate effectiveness of 3D visualization as a learning tool WID News Researchers from the Neuroimaging Center at NYU Abu Dhabi (NYUAD) and Dr. Karen Schloss from Wisconsin Institute for the Discovery at University Wisconsin-Madison have developed the UW Virtual Brain Project, producing unique, interactive, 3D narrated diagrams to help students learn about the structure and function of perceptual systems in the human brain. Continue Reading UW researchers join three national artificial intelligence institutes WID News Institute for Future Edge Networks and Distributed Intelligence (AI-EDGE) led by Robert Nowak, UW–Madison professor of electrical and computer engineering and researchers at Ohio State. Continue Reading This electron microscope image of the new “scaffolding” for growing and implanting retinal cells shows the ice cube tray-shaped reservoirs that hold cells and cylinder-shaped holes in the bottom layer, which provide channels for maturing photoreceptors to make contact with a patient’s retinal tissue. COURTESY OF THE MA LAB Micro-Molded ‘Ice Cube Tray’ Scaffold is Next Step in Returning Sight to Injured Retinas Featured Science WID's Sarah Gong is part of a team that developed a micro-molded scaffolding photoreceptor "patch" to be implanted under damaged or diseased retinas, the next step in restoring sight. Continue Reading Fixing Genetic Mistakes to Restore Vision Featured Science Shaoqin "Sarah" Gong collaborates on a new approach to target genetic mutations and develop a new therapy for restoring vision in children and adults. Continue Reading UW Engineers and Vision Researchers Develop Stem-cell Therapy for Combat-related Eye Injuries Featured Science Using a microscopic retinal patch, researchers at the University of Wisconsin‒Madison will develop and test a new way to treat United States military personnel blinded in combat with help from engineers including WID's Sarah Gong. Continue Reading