Materials Matter

Binghamton University

Students work on color and frequency matching exercise

Binghamton University’s transdisciplinary research group, the Material and Visual Worlds, has given rise to a new vision for research and education that hinges on the study of materials. Materials are part of everyday life, yet their physical properties, social histories, and conditions of formation are opaque to most of us. Rarely are these varied aspects of materials looked at side-by-side in academic study. With support of Binghamton University in 2017, the State University of New York in 2018, and the National Endowment of the Humanities from 2019-2023, we created a suite of undergraduate research and general education courses to connect the humanities with STEM fields focused on materials. This project includes the first cross-listed laboratory science and aesthetics general education course, a sequence of research courses for first year students, partnerships with Corning Museum of Glass and Golden Paints, and multiple publications and presentations that range from museum studies, classics, physics, materials science, design thinking, liberal arts eduction and pedagogy.

Humanities and STEM Work Together

Art Matters. Science Matters. Materials Matter.

Materials Matter Proposal to the National Endowment for the Humanities