Scialog Fellow

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Assistant Professor Matthew Nava has been selected as a Scialog Fellow in Sustainable Minerals, Metals, and Materials.

The Scialog fellowship is an esteemed group of early-career scholars and scientists dedicated to discussing and solving humanity’s greatest problems.

More than 50 early career researchers have been selected as Fellows for the first meeting of a three-year Scialog initiative to spark advances in the mining, design, manufacture, and disposal of materials needed to achieve a more sustainable and low-carbon energy system.

Nava joined our inorganic chemistry faculty in July 2022 as an Assistant Professor. A Southern California native, Nava received a bachelor’s degree in biochemistry as a Maximizing Access to Research Careers (MARC) U*STAR Program trainee and his master’s degree in chemistry from the University of California, Riverside, working with Professor Chris Reed. He received his Ph.D. in chemistry in 2017 from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology with Professor Christopher Cummins on Lester Wolfe and Alan Davison Fellowships. Before joining the UCLA faculty, Nava was a joint postdoctoral fellow in Professors Daniel G. Nocera’s and Daniel Kahne’s groups at Harvard.

The Nava lab aims to explore molecular structure and reactivity for advancements in materials, biology, and energy. Key focuses include efficient energy transduction and reversible chemical conversions for new energy storage. By delving into synthetic inorganic chemistry, the lab seeks to bridge the gap between chemical synthesis and practical application.

Scialog: Sustainable Minerals, Metals, and Materials, set to begin in September 2024 and continuing through 2026, is co-sponsored by Research Corporation for Science Advancement and the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation, with additional support from The Kavli Foundation. Scialog, created by RCSA in 2010, is short for “science + dialog.”

Click here for the list of Fellows and Facilitators who will be attending the 2024 Scialog: Sustainable Minerals, Metals, and Materials meeting. More names will be added as they are confirmed for 2024’s meeting, and further opportunities for Fellows to join the initiative will become available.

This interdisciplinary community of Fellows represents institutions across the United States and Canada, and brings together expertise from fields including chemistry, materials science, geology, ecology, engineering, mining, computational science, physics, and more, all with an emphasis on how to ensure a sustainable future. The goal of Scialog is to facilitate connections among scientists from a variety of disciplines so they can discuss challenges and bottlenecks to advancing fundamental science, to build community around visionary goals, and to develop ideas for innovative team projects.

Senior scientists will serve as Facilitators to frame the large questions under consideration, and to evaluate proposals for novel, high-risk research that can best be explored in a collaborative, multidisciplinary way. The most promising of those team projects will be awarded seed funding.

Sustainable Minerals, Metals, and Materials, or SM3, will be RCSA’s third Scialog co-sponsorship with the Sloan Foundation.

RCSA’s other upcoming Scialog meetings will include the first year of Automating Chemical Laboratories in April 2024, the third year of Molecular Basis of Cognition in October 2024, and the first year of Early Science with the LSST in November 2024.

To nominate an early career scientist as a Fellow for any of RCSA’s upcoming Scialog initiatives, please contact the program director. To nominate yourself, submit a Scialog Fellow application here.

Penny Jennings, UCLA Department of Chemistry & Biochemistry,