Interest Groups (IGs)

Does the Ronin Institute have academic departments? No. We have something better: Interest Groups (IGs).

IGs are self-organized groups of Research Scholars that address specific topics. In contrast to conventional academic departments, IGs are fluid and community-based. Any Research Scholar is free to join as many IGs as they like, and they can leave at any time. This allows for great potential of cross-disciplinary exchange, since IGs don’t determine what a member’s background and experience should be.

Another important distinction: The Ronin Institute doesn’t define the topics of the IGs. Instead, Research Scholars decide what IGs are needed, and also what isn’t needed anymore. So, our IGs always stay relevant.

In recognition of the ebbs and flows of academic interests and needs, our IGs are structured in a lifecycle that allows them to power up, down, and off as needed.

Interest Group (IG) Lifecycle

The Interest Group Lifecycle starts with an Interest Group Channel (ig-) on Slack, where Scholars can start an ig- to convene other scholars and share information. An ig- exists as long as there is activity within the channel. If the ig- seeks to increase their activity, they can level up to an Interest Group Plus (IG+), which signals that the group has established specific goals and structure to how they interact and meet their goals.


Interest Group Plus (IG+)

IG+ are groups of Research Scholars that have committed to achieving specific goals within their area of interest. These groups meet on a regular basis, and are open to all Ronin Institute Research Scholars. Check out their page to see what they are working on.

Center for Advancing Mathematics and Physics (CAMP)

Advancing the fields of Mathematics, Physics, Applied Mathematics, and Applied Physics

Photo by Kai Dahms on Unsplash

Interest Group Channels (ig-)

Ronin Institute Research Scholars create Interest Group channels (prefixed by ig-) on Slack to convene Scholars around specific topics, explore areas of interest, and organize and share information. Existing simply as channels, these ig-‘s are designed to be easy to create, join, leave, and archive–when the interest wanes.

Here are some examples of the ig-‘s that we have at the Ronin Institute, including the Slack channel name (for Research Scholars only) and contact person:

  • Artificial Intelligence (#ig-artificialintelligence): Dedicated to AI and emerging technologies discussion and collaboration. Contact: Laura Musgrave
  • Basic Income (#ig-basic-income): Discussion about basic income, also known as universal basic income, unconditional basic income or UBI. Contact: Aleeza Howitt 
  • Big Brain (#ig-big-brain): An initiative to pull together A Primer for: What is Independent Scholarship and How can it be done? Contacts: Judy Daniels & Emily Monosson
  • Biological Intelligent Systems (#ig-biological-intelligent-systems): Discussion and collaboration on intelligent biological and biomimetic systems. Contact: Gregg Willcox.
  • Book Admirers (#ig-bookadmirers): Whether you publish a book, write a story, read a novel, feel free to share! Contact: Laure Haak
  • Careers (#ig-careers): For Scholars to discuss their career/job aspirations, including how to implement their academic skills and credentials, and navigate their academic journey (e.g., school). Contact: Keith Tse 
  • Chemistry (ig-chemistry): For scholars to seek out collaborations in chemistry, and to help each other do meaningful research in this field. Contact: Swagotom Sarkar
  • Complex Systems (#ig-complexsystems): To discuss the explanation and modeling techniques of complex systems. Contact: Ashton Sperry
  • Consulting and Business (#ig-consulting-business): Discussing and trading information about consulting, contracting, and doing business, particularly in the context of being an Independent Scholar. Contact: Emily Lankau
  • COVID-19 Biology (#ig-covid19-biology): Investigating basic biology/ecology of virus, mitigation strategies, short/medium term therapies, vaccine development for COVID-19. Contact: Alex Lancaster 
  • COVID-19 Social (#ig-covid19-social): To discuss how COVID19 affects BAME groups globally. Contact: Michelle King-Okoye
  • Disasters (#ig-disasters): Discussion and exploration of disasters from a multidisciplinary perspective. Contact: Michelle Susberry Hill
  • Ecology and Environment (#ig-ecology-and-environment): Research, careers, and questions about our ecology & environment, including conservation, sustainability, natural resources, wildlife, and people. Contact: Jon Walter
  • Education (#ig-education): How do we improve or think more openly about teaching and learning? Contact: Carolyn Sealfon
  • Engineering and Engineering Science (#ig-engineering-and-engineering-science): For those conducting research on engineers within specialty fields of science and technology studies, social sciences, and history. Contact: Julie Mark Cohen
  • Evolution (#ig-evolution): The evolution of Homo Sapiens and its development till modern day. Contact: keithtselinguist
  • Health (#ig-health): A place to share, discuss, and post about physical, mental, spiritual, intellectual, social well-being. Contact: Ponn Mahayosnand
  • Math and Physics (#ig-math-physics): Scholars interested in math and physics and collaborations. Contact: Thomas Buckholtz
  • Open Science (#ig-open-science): Questions and dialogue around the topic of Open Science. Contact: Ponn Mahayosnand
  • Project Network (#ig-project network): working on the development of a network map. Contact: Yasmina Jraissati
  • Quantum Computing (#ig-quantum_computing): focuses on discussions and materials relevant to the progress in Quantum Computing and its applications as possible enhancement of modern AI and ML algorithms. Contact: V. G. Gueorguiev
  • Revolutionary Knowledge Production (#ig-revolutionary-knowledge-production): For Scholars who have had enough with every way the traditional academy structures the lives, work, and culture of our community. Contact: John Paulas
  • Social Ecological Systems (#ig-social-ecological-systems): Discussion on Social Ecological Systems (SES). A SES consists of ‘a bio-geo-physical’ unit, its actors and institutions. Contact: Angelo Luidens
  • Social Science (#ig-socialscience): dedicated to social science discussion and collaboration. Contact: Laura Musgrave