Smithsonian and Oak Ridge National Laboratory Join for the Advancement of Science and Education

June 12, 2014
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The Smithsonian Institution and the Department of Energy’s Oak Ridge National Laboratory have announced a new partnership to support collaborative research programs and science education efforts. This is the first partnership between the Smithsonian and Oak Ridge National Laboratory, which was formalized during the signing of a memorandum of understanding June 12.

The Smithsonian and ORNL both examine many of the world's most complex and time-sensitive scientific problems and support many research programs that complement and reinforce each other. They also support science education and impact students and teachers from elementary school through post-doctoral studies. The MOU, signed by Smithsonian Secretary Wayne Clough and ORNL’s director Thom Mason, formalizes future collaboration of the two organizations in scientific and educational areas.

“The Smithsonian is proud to partner with another organization that realizes that basic research is vital to the future of the nation and that knowledge about the natural world is inherently valuable to society,” said Clough. “This agreement will help us each maximize our strengths and achieve our common goals across a broad spectrum of scientific endeavor.”

The Smithsonian and ORNL will focus future collaborations under the MOU on areas they strongly share, such as climate change, human-environment interactions, genomics, computational sciences, bioinformatics, data analytics and STEM education.

The Smithsonian is the world’s largest museum and research complex, consisting of 19 museums and galleries, the National Zoological Park and nine research facilities. There are more than 500 Smithsonian staff scientists, augmented by an equal number of fellows and hundreds of international collaborators who conduct research in field stations and laboratories on all seven continents and serve as national and international experts in a wide scope of disciplines.

ORNL is the largest science and energy national laboratory in the Department of Energy system, with unique scientific experts and tools often not available elsewhere. ORNL’s scientific programs focus on materials, neutron science, energy, high-performance computing, systems biology and national security.

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