The Institute for the Science of Origins (ISO) is a collaborative team of faculty members and researchers from diverse scientific disciplines seeking to understand how complex systems emerge and evolve, from the universe to the mind, from microbes to humanity.

Through interdisciplinary teams and cross-departmental programs, the institute works with its partners, fellows, and the university community to create new knowledge, to prepare the scientists of tomorrow and to educate the public about origins research.

The institute was born out of discussions among scientific and administrative leaders at Case Western Reserve University and the Cleveland Museum of Natural History (CMNH) on how to advance the understanding and appreciation of the science of origins. In spring 2008, emboldened by the inclusion of origins in the university’s new strategic plan, a group of faculty and curators decided to work toward the creation of an Institute for the Science of Origins (ISO), under the leadership of Glenn Starkman, professor of physics and astronomy, who was appointed by Case Western Reserve President Barbara Snyder to be director of the Origins Initiative.

The ISO now encompasses and brings together researchers in multiple disciplines, departments and centers at both Case Western Reserve and the CMNH, and is seeding, supporting and planning research and education across a broad spectrum of origins science. The ISO is pleased to have established a partnership with ideastream, the non-profit media organization that includes Cleveland’s public television and radio stations.