Caltech announces a $115 million gift from Tianqiao Chen and Chrissy Luo to establish the Tianqiao and Chrissy Chen Institute for Neuroscience at Caltech. The institute is named for the husband and wife team who co-founded Shanda Group, a global investment company with a history in online entertainment.
“Our involvement in the Internet and entertainment industries allowed us to witness the ability for technology advancements to influence human perception, as well as observe the resultant meaningful effects on human behavior,” remarked Mr. Chen, Chairman and CEO of Shanda Group. “However, there is little understanding about how the brain processes and connects what lies in between—sensation, perception, cognition, and action. We believe uncovering how the brain perceives, interprets, and interacts with the world is pivotal in so many aspects. It can shape groundbreaking industries such as artificial intelligence, robotics, and virtual reality. It also plays a critical role in addressing social issues such as aging and behavioral deficiencies. It can even help answer many ultimate questions about life, such as its origin, purpose, and ending. This is the mission of our philanthropy, and we are dedicating an initial one billion dollars to this cause.”
“We spent two years learning the subject from highly regarded global universities with whom we continue to have conversations,” added Ms. Luo, Vice Chairman of Shanda Group. “We chose Caltech as our first partner not just for their strong reputation as a leading research institution, but also for the admiration in their natural alignment with Shanda’s culture, which is focused on creating excellence and discovery. We have enjoyed the strong working relationship with Caltech and are firmly confident of this partnership.”