The Center for BioDynamics (CBD) is a multidisciplinary, interdepartmental center whose mission is to advance training and research at the interfaces among dynamical systems, biology and engineering. The CBD develops and implements techniques from dynamical systems theory to gain insight into the functioning of physiological systems, as well as to improve clinical devices and techniques. In addition, the CBD serves as a home for the development and sharing of dynamical systems techniques for use in diverse applications.
The CBD trains undergraduates, graduate students and postdoctoral fellows in leading techniques from dynamical systems theory and its applications to biology and engineering. It emphasizes the integration of research and education, as well as the vertical integration of students and mentors at all levels within Boston University. Training is done partially through involvement in cross-disciplinary collaborations and multi-mentored projects. The CBD does not grant degrees.
The CBD has many ongoing activities. There are informal weekly meetings of two subroups, the Applied Biodynamics group run by Collins, and a computational neurobiology group run by Kopell and White. For each, the attendees come from multiple departments. Other activities include reading groups and journal clubs initiated by trainees and faculty. There is also a yearly retreat, monthly seminars by CBD members, a mini-symposium each semester and other social events.
The CBD emphasizes training via immersion in collaborative research. Both informal weekly meetings serve to generate new research questions, provide a forum for ongoing research, and create a setting for informal meetings with outside experts. Collaborations are fostered between junior members (e.g., postdocs) of different groups, as well as between senior and junior members of the CBD.