The Berkshire Hathaway Vice Chairman has recently donated $65 million to UC Santa Barbara, the physics institute. This is the largest gift that the university has ever received in its history.
The donation – made by Charlie Munger – will be used to fund a new visitor housing facility for the university’s Kavli Institute for Theoretical Physics, we learned from UC Santa Barbara spokesperson Shelly Leachman.
The residence – three stories tall – will house the visiting scientists that are going to participate in programs at the Institute, said Leachman. Since 1979, the school has hosted many thousands of the top scientists from around the world.
In a statement made recently, Munger tells us that the housing facility is there to help the physicists build trust and get to know each other better, which is important when attempting to reach breakthroughs in the field.
“Now we can get people together from all over the world and these people can cross fertilize each other,” said Munger. “Physics is getting so hard now, they need all the help they can get.”
The overall mission of the Institute is to bring the leading scientists from around the world together so that they collaborate on the most exciting and challenging questions that physics has to offer, said Lars Bildsten, UC Santa Barbara Gluck professor of theoretical physics and director of the Institute, in a statement.
Once the residence is completed, the scientists will have an opportunity to continue interacting “into the nights and weekends,” said Bildsten.
“I’m confident we will see an increased number of collaborations and scientific progress,” said Bildsten.