Mahoney Receives UVA's Public Impact-Focused Research Award

Batten professor Christine Mahoney received the Public Impact-Focused Research Award for her work supporting the rights of the displaced locally, nationally and globally. (Photo by Dan Addison, University Communications)
Batten professor Christine Mahoney received the Public Impact-Focused Research Award for her work supporting the rights of the displaced locally, nationally and globally. (Photo by Dan Addison, University Communications)

On Friday during a virtual ceremony over Zoom, the University of Virginia honored and recognized faculty members for their outstanding contributions to their fields and the impact of their research and scholarly activities at the annual Research Achievement Awards.

“Although it was a challenging year for researchers, we are proud of our faculty’s achievements and accomplishments,” Melur “Ram” Ramasubramanian, UVA’s vice president for research, said. “We believe it’s important to celebrate our faculty who are making a significant impact on the world with their research and scholarship.”

“Our dedicated and talented researchers are deeply committed to the mission of this university—advancing knowledge and passing it on to the world and the next generation,” Provost Liz Magill said. “The Research Achievement Awards are a great way to recognize our researchers for making meaningful contributions in their disciplines, supporting their peers and mentees, and having a positive impact on our communities.”

“If this past year has taught us anything, it’s that academic research is a fundamental part of a successful society, fueling discoveries in medicine, breakthroughs in engineering, and changing the way we think about and respond to the natural and social world,” President Jim Ryan said. “The research award winners truly exemplify the high-quality scholarship that makes UVA a leading research institution.”

Ken Ono, Thomas Jefferson Professor of Mathematics, delivered the keynote address, and received a Distinguished Spotlight Award to recognize his contribution to the field of mathematics. He has won Sloan, Packard and Guggenheim fellowships, and in 2020 Academic Influence named him one of the top 20 most influential mathematicians of the past decade. 

Public Impact-Focused Research Award

Christine Mahoney, Frank Batten School of Leadership and Public Policy

Mahoney’s research focuses on how nongovernmental organizations and governments at the local, national and global levels attempt to fight for the rights of refugees fleeing their homelands because of ethnic and political violence. Her scholarship in global advocacy uses social entrepreneurship to support the rights of the displaced. Her work has led to the creation of the Refugee Investment Network, a non-profit impact investing collaborative which creates solutions to forced migration around the globe.

Mahoney also does community public interest research in the local community. She collaborates with the New Hill Development Corporation to help end racial disparities by expanding and strengthening the African American middle class. The project uses a community engagement process, and has fostered partnerships in Charlottesville and around Virginia.

“Christine has brought the research excellence of the University of Virginia to support an under-resourced segment of the Charlottesville population,” said Yolunda Harrell, the CEO of New Hill Development Corporation.

Watch all of the award winners accept their awards.

Batten's John Holbein, assistant professor of public policy and education, and Jay Shimshack, associate professor of public policy and economics and associate dean for academic affairs, were also honored for their contributions in 2020 and invited to attend the event.

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