Simons Institute Launches Research Pod on Resilience

Resilience Pod News Article

This month, the Simons Institute launched a Research Pod on Resilience in Brain, Natural, and Algorithmic Systems. Directed by Shafi Goldwasser, with co-directors Venkat Guruswami and Daniela Kaufer, the new pod is funded by a gift from an anonymous donor.

The Resilience Pod will explore the topic of resilience through an interdisciplinary lens, over the course of three years. The study of resilience (or lack thereof), and of how to proactively incorporate it in a system, is of significance across the biological and natural sciences, complex societal systems such as the economy, engineered systems like the cloud or the internet, and fault-tolerant and robust algorithmic systems. One area of particular focus within the pod will be dialogue and collaboration between computer scientists and neuroscientists, aimed at understanding the mechanisms underlying resilience in the brain.

Since 2020–21, alongside our semester-long research programs, summer clusters, and weeklong workshops, the Simons Institute has hosted “research pods” — sustained research efforts by small groups of collaborators working on a specific topic over several years. Our research pods initiative kicked off with two multiyear pods: one in machine learning and one in quantum computing. Each pod features a small number of junior and senior researchers who are in residence at the Institute for the duration. Sustained effort is articulated by intense shorter convenings, including summer clusters and semester-long research programs.

The Simons Institute is currently accepting applicants for postdoctoral positions within the Resilience Pod (view the call for applications). And UC Berkeley faculty members are invited to become affiliated pod members (write to simonsdirector [at] to express interest).