Three ACES scientists rank among world's most influential

Students walking on campus

Three researchers in the College of Agricultural, Consumer and Environmental Sciences at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign have been named to the 2023 Clarivate Analytics Highly Cited Researchers list. The list recognizes research scientists and social scientists who have demonstrated exceptional influence – reflected through their publication of multiple papers frequently cited by their peers during the last decade. 

The highly cited ACES researchers this year are: crop sciences and plant biology professor Elizabeth Ainsworth, natural resources and environmental sciences professor Kaiyu Guan, and crop sciences and plant biology professor Stephen Long. Five others from campus are also on this year’s list. 

Elizabeth Ainsworth

Elizabeth Ainsworth headshot

In addition to being a professor of crop sciences and of plant biology, Ainsworth is employed by the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s Agricultural Research Service Global Change and Photosynthesis Research Unit. She is an affiliate of the Carl R. Woese Institute for Genomic Biology, the Institute for Sustainability, Energy and Environment and the Center for Digital Agriculture. She directs the Soybean Free Air Concentration Enrichment facility, the longest running field experiment for adapting crops to atmospheric change, where she studies how crops respond to rising carbon dioxide concentrations, ozone pollution, increased temperatures and intensifying drought stress. A key goal of her research is to maximize crop production in the future. Ainsworth was awarded the National Academy of Sciences Prize in Food and Agricultural Sciences in 2019 and was elected a National Academy of Sciences member in 2020.

Kaiyu Guan

Kaiyu Guan headshot

Guan works to ensure sustainable food production and develop solutions to environmental challenges in agriculture, focusing on agroecosystem modeling, remote sensing, environmental forecasting and agricultural adaptation to climate change. He uses satellite data, computational models, fieldwork, supercomputing and machine-learning approaches to address how climate and human practices affect crop productivity, water resource availability and ecosystem functioning. Guan is the founding director of the Agroecosystem Sustainability Center at iSEE, a professor in computer science and a Blue Waters professor at NCSA. He is an American Geophysical Union Fellow, an AGU James B. Macelwane Medal recipient, and was recently awarded the Foodshot Global Groundbreaker Prize.

Stephen Long

Stephen Long headshot

Long is the Stanley O. Ikenberry Chair of Crop Sciences and Plant Biology. He uses computational and bioengineering approaches to improve photosynthetic efficiency and works to address the effects of climate change on crop yields. He was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society of London in 2013 and a member of the National Academy of Sciences in 2019. He directs Realizing Increased Photosynthetic Efficiency, a multinational project. He is an affiliate of the IGB, NCSA and the Center for Advanced Study

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