From left, Roger Ames, Christopher Bae and Aaron Ohta

The University of Hawaiʻi Board of Regents announces the honorees for the Regents’ Medal for Excellence in Research for 2012.

The award recognizes scholarly contributions that expand the boundaries of knowledge and enrich the lives of students and the community.

2012 Regents’ Medal for Excellence in Research honorees

Roger Ames
Professor, Department of Philosophy, College of Arts and Humanities, University of Hawaiʻi at Mānoa

Roger Ames joined UH Mānoa’s Department of Philosophy in 1978. His work has taken him around the world. He received his doctorate from the University of London, studied Chinese philosophy in China and Japan and was a visiting professor at National Taiwan University, Chinese University of Hong Kong and Peking University. He has also lectured extensively worldwide.

Ames’ work is a major reason the University of Hawaiʻi has become the acknowledged world center of comparative philosophy. Almost all of Ames’ books have been translated into Chinese by a generation of Chinese scholars, and they have been published by China’s leading university and trade publishing houses.

Christopher Bae
Associate professor, Department of Anthropology, College of Social Sciences, UH Mānoa.

Christopher J. Bae is a paleoanthropologist whose research focuses on developing a more in depth understanding of the human evolutionary record, particularly in eastern Asia. He is also a full member of the Center for Korean Studies and the Center for Chinese Studies at UH Mānoa.

Bae actively conducts paleoanthropological field and laboratory research in Korea, China and Japan and has published quite extensively. He has more than 50 publications to date, including three edited volumes and more than 35 journal articles, many of them appearing in high impact factor international peer reviewed journals.

Among his extramural research grants, Bae received a prestigious five year $1.2 million research grant from the Academy of Korean Studies (2010–2015) to investigate the question of the earliest peopling of the Korean Peninsula from a multidisciplinary research perspective.

Read a University of Hawaiʻi Mālamalama article on Bae.

Aaron Ohta
Assistant professor, Department of Electrical Engineering, College of Engineering, UH Mānoa.

Aaron Ohta is a University of Hawaiʻi graduate who received his MS from UCLA and PhD from UC Berkeley.

His research has resulted in more than 70 journal and conference publications. One of Ohta’s research projects made the news in 2011 when his microrobot system took second place in the International Mobile Microrobotics Challenge by the National Institute of Standards and Technology. The system has the potential to transform this up-and-coming field of microrobotics.