John Templeton Foundation: 25 years of

Research Grant Program

Overview  |  Grant Winners  |  Big Questions  |  FAQ

Big Question I
What was the earliest state of the universe?

David Chernoff
Professor
Astronomy Department
Cornell University
Ithaca, New York
Detecting Cosmic Superstrings

Co-Investigator

Henry Tye
Professor
Hong Kong University of Science and Technology

 

Richard Holman
Professor
Department of Physics
Carnegie Mellon University
Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
CosmoArchaeology: Digging for the Initial State

Co-Investigators

Shirley Ho
Assistant Professor of Physics
Carnegie Mellon University

Sarah Shandera
Professor
The Pennsylvania State University

Nishant Agarwal
Postdoctoral Research Fellow
Carnegie Mellon University

Ross O’Connell
Visiting Researcher
Carnegie Mellon University

 

Alexander Maloney
Associate Professor
Physics Department
McGill University
Montreal, Canada
Computing the Wave Function of the Universe

Co‐Investigators

Robert Brandenberger
Professor
McGill University

Patrick Hayden
Associate Professor
McGill University

Johannes Walcher
Assistant Professor
McGill University

 

Parampreet Singh
Assistant Professor
Department of Physics & Astronomy Louisiana State University
Baton Rouge, Louisiana
Probing the genesis of space-time using supercomputers

Co-Investigator

Peter Diener
Assistant Professor
Louisiana State Uni versity

 

Kostas Skenderis
Professor
Department of Mathematics
University of Southampton Southampton, England
A holographic theory for the very early universe

Co-Investigator

Marika Taylor
Associate Professor
University of Southampton

 

David Spergel
Professor
Department of Astrophysical Sciences
Princeton University
Princeton, New Jersey
Detecting or Falsifying the Multiverse

Co-Investigator

Daan Meerburg
Postdoctoral Research Fellow
Princeton University

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Big Question II
Is our observable universe unique or is it part of a much larger multiverse?

Anthony Aguirre
Associate Professor of Physics
Department of Physics
University of California at Santa Cruz
Santa Cruz, California
Testing the Multiverse

Co-Investigators

Hiranya Peiris
Lecturer
University College, London

Matthew Johnson
Postdoctoral Researcher
Perimeter Institute

 

Raphael Bousso
Professor
Physics Department
University of California, Berkeley
Berkeley, California
Measuring the Multiverse

 

Matthew Kleban
Associate Professor
Department of Physics
New York University
New York, New York
Testing the Multiverse with Cosmic Bubble Collisions

 

Chao-Lin Kuo
Assistant Professor
Department of Physics
Stanford University
Stanford, California
CMB Polarization, 21-cm Cosmology, and Testing the Multiverse

Co-Investigator

Leonardo Senatore
Assistant Professor
Stanford University

 

Wim Ubachs
Professor of Atomic, Molecular & Laser Physics
Department of Physics and Astronomy
Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam
Amsterdam, The Netherlands
Search for Drifting Constants via Extra-Galactic Alcohol

 

Alexander Vilenkin
Professor
Department of Physics and Astronomy
Tufts University
Medford, Massachusetts
Global structure of the multiverse and the measure problem

Co-Investigators

Jaume Garriga
Professor
Universitat de Barcelona

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Big Question III
What is the origin of the complexity in the universe?

Marcelo Gleiser
Professor
Department of Physics and Astronomy
Dartmouth College
Hanover, New Hampshire
Emergent Complexity in the Universe: Origin and Limits

Co-Investigator

Robert Caldwell
Professor
Dartmouth College

 

Barry F. Madore
Senior Research Astronomer
The Observatories Carnegie Institution of Washington
Pasadena, California
Cognitive Astrophysics: Asking the Hardest Questions

Co-Investigators

Wendy Freedman
Director
The Observatories Carnegie Institution of Washington

Juna Kollmeier
Research Astronomer
The Observatories Carnegie Institution of Washington

Andrew Benson
Research Astronomer
The Observatories Carnegie Institution of Washington

Thomas J. Cox
Postdoctoral Research Fellow
The Observatories Carnegie Institution of Washington

 

Mark Neyrinck
Assistant Research Scientist
Department of Physics and Astronomy
Johns Hopkins University
Baltimore, Maryland
Initial Information Folding and Flowing into Complexity

Co-Investigator

Miguel Aragon-Calvo
Assistant Research Scientist
Johns Hopkins University

 

Sergei Shandarin
Professor Department of Physics & Astronomy
University of Kansas
Lawrence, Kansas
The Emergence of Complex Structural Patterns: A manifestation of increasing cosmic complexity

Co-Investigator

Rien van de Weygaert
Professor
University of Groningen

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Big Question IV
Are we alone in the universe? Or, are there other life and intelligence beyond the solar system?

Jonathan I. Lunine
David C. Duncan Professor in the Physical Sciences; Director, Center for Radiophysics and Space Research Department of Astronomy
Cornell University
Ithaca, New York
The search for life in extremely exotic environments: A strict test for Life's cosmic ubiquity

Co-Investigators

David Shalloway
Professor
Cornell University

David Usher
Associate Professor
Cornell University

Rene Corrales
Associate Professor
University of Arizona

 

Geoffrey Marcy
Professor of Astronomy
University of California, Berkeley
Berkeley, California
Discovery of Earth-like Planets and Signals from Intelligent Life

Co-Investigators

Andrew Howard
Assistant Astronomer
University of Hawaii

John Johnson
Assistant Professor
California Institute of Technology

 

Lucianne Walkowicz
Henry Norris Russell Fellow
Department of Astrophysical Sciences
Princeton University
Princeton, New Jersey
Stellar Lighthouses: Decoding Signatures of Advanced Civilizations in Precision Stellar Photometry

Co-Investigators

Edwin L. Turner
Professor
Princeton University

Victoria Meadows
Associate Professor
University of Washington

Jeffrey Scargle
Research Astrophysicist
NASA Ames Research Center

Anthony Zee
Professor
University of California, Santa Barbara

 

Jason Wright
Assistant Professor
Department of Astronomy & Astrophysic
The Pennsylvania State University
University Park, Pennsylvania
Constraining the Abundance of Kardashev Type II and III Civilizations From Large Area Infrared Surveys

 

Conference of Award Winners Program PDF

Co-Investigators

Steinn Sigurdsson
Associate Professor
The Pennsylvania State University

Matthew Povich
Research Associate
The Pennsylvania State University