Brown University


A Brown University engineering professor has been recognized for her work inventing better ways to deliver drugs into the human body, including an innovation that may help diabetics.

Ambar Espinoza / RIPR

The New Year is set to usher in a new era of plant research at Brown University with a new greenhouse atop the renovated Building for Environmental Research and Teaching (BERT).

The new greenhouse, formally known as the Plant Environmental Center (PEC), gives university researchers the ability to grow and study plants in multiple environments, allowing plant researchers to study the effects of climate change on plants. For the first time, researchers will be able to simulate various environmental conditions, such as high temperatures and droughts.

Novelist Charles Pinning will  be reading and signing his new book tomorrow (Thursday, Dec.12)  at 5:30 at the Brown University book store. Pinning’s new work, entitled `Irreplaceable’ is set in Rhode Island and is about an art theft at the Rhode Island School of Design Museum that is reminiscent of the great, unsolved heist of precious art from the Isabella  Stewart Gardner Museum in Boston.

The Brown bookstore is at 244 Thayer Street on Providence’s East Side. The store has a café.

Kristin Gourlay / RIPR

This month, the University of Rhode Island launched a new neuroscience research institute, where researchers will focus on fighting Alzheimer’s and other diseases. It’s the fourth such program to hang out a shingle in the state. This growing community could eventually help more Rhode Islanders battle some of the most debilitating diseases.

(Neurons firing)

This is what it sounds like when you think about opening and closing your hand.


Scientists have come a step closer to understanding when the signs of Alzheimer’s begin. Brown University researchers and their colleagues have found some of the earliest evidence yet.

One of the highlights of the holiday season in Providence is the annual Interfaith Thanksgiving Service that is held before Thanksgiving at one of the East Side’s many houses of worship. This year the service will be held at Temple Beth El on Tuesday Nov. 26 at 7 p.m. The temple is located at 70 Orchard Avenue on the East Side.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

On this World Diabetes Day, I decided to look into the prevalence of diabetes in Rhode Island and find out whether diagnoses are on the rise. They are, unsurprisingly. Check out this interactive map from the CDC that shows the increase in diabetes rates over time in each Rhode Island county.

U.S. National Library of Medicine / National Institutes of Health

Miriam Hospital cardiologist and Brown medical school professor Dr. Barbara Roberts said the Food and Drug Administration’s proposal to ban trans fats in processed foods is long overdue. Trans fats, or partially hydrogenated oils, are added to foods like cookies, ready-to-use frostings, and microwave popcorn to extend their shelf life. Scientists have known for decades that they can lead to hardened arteries and higher bad cholesterol.


Brown University is creating a committee to review how a talk by New York City Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly was canceled last week after a noisy protest. Kelly’s critics object to his department’s controversial stop and frisk policy.

Kelly was repeatedly interrupted by students and outside activists when he tried speaking during an October 29 appearance at Brown. The university responded by cancelling the talk and clearing the room where the event was taking place.

Ian Donnis

Attorney General Peter Kilmartin joins Political Roundtable this week to discuss the race for governor; the fate of gun-related legislation in the General Assembly; the cancaled appearance at Brown University involving New York City police commissioner Raymond Kelly, and other issues.

John Bender / RIPR

For the last twenty years Brown University’s organist Mark Steinbach has been playing a concert on Halloween at midnight.

Rhode Island Public Radio’s John Bender, went out to the University to learn more about the spooky tradition, and what makes a piece of music scary.

That’s Mark Steinbach, the University Organist at Brown.  He’s practicing for his annual organ recital which happens at midnight on Halloween.

“Technically it starts at 11:59 pm, so that people know which day to come,” said Steinbach.

Brown University had to cancel New York City Police Commissioner Ray Kelly’s lecture yesterday, after protesters refused to let him speak. More than 100 students and activists turned out for the talk, and began shouting at Kelly as he tried to speak.

Brown officials told the protesters to wait for a question and answer session at the end of Kelly's talk, but they refused to quiet down. After nearly 30 minutes, Brown officials say they made the decision to clear the lecture hall.

John Bender / RIPR

More than 100 Student and community protestors shut down a lecture by New York City police commissioner Ray Kelly at Brown University yesterday afternoon.

Mario Vega, a Brown student, says he was there to protest the way NYC police have monitored Muslim residents since 9/11.

“I think Ray Kelly’s policies are completely racist and Islamiphobic, and I completely do not support how Brown is paying him to come here and unilaterally impose his doctrine on the people of the University.  That gives the impression that we support it and we don’t," said Vega.

Students and community groups plan to demonstrate outside the Brown University lecture hall where New York Police Commissioner Raymond Kelly is slated to speak this afternoon.

Kelly has overseen New York’s controversial “stop-and-frisk” policing strategy. The demonstrators say they believe the policy amounts to racial profiling, and they are also angered by what they call Kelly’s “widespread surveillance” of the Muslim community.

The governing board of Brown University has decided against divesting from the coal industry, saying there are better ways to fight global warming.

Students had led an effort to get the Ivy League university to take its money out of coal, arguing Brown should set an example and stop investing in companies that contribute to greenhouse gasses emissions, which are a major contributor to climate change.