Envision Research Institute

Research is a critical component of the mission of Envision, and Envision is committed to engaging in research that addresses practical issues in the clinical treatment and rehabilitation of persons who have low vision or blindness. Improving outcomes and closing practice gaps not only serves our mission, it also addresses a larger plan promoted by the National Eye Institute.

For  more information, see our ERI Brochure  or visit the Research Institute site.

"Medical marvels have increased the survival of prematurely born babies and lengthened
the adult lifespan. As a result, the number of individuals with vision loss continues to
grow. Until the causes of blindness have been eradicated, the need for rehabilitation
and accessibility research is imperative. ERI will drive applied research aimed at
restoring function to the blind and visually impaired."

- Laura Walker, PhD
Executive Director, Envision Research Institute


We strive to improve the quality of life and provide inspiration for the blind and visually impaired, however, there remain significant gaps in the scientific understanding of these conditions. Envision is uniquely positioned to address the gaps in scientific research given its longstanding and direct contact with blind and low vision populations.  The Envision Research Institute is dedicated to investigating the functional implications of vision loss, early screening and access to treatments, optimizing rehabilitation therapies and developing accessibility technology.

For more information about our team, please visit the Research Institute site.


Our brains are wired during development to recognize, remember and appreciate the beauty of objects in our world. Does this wiring depend on the senses feeding the brain? Through behavioral and brain imaging studies, we will examine how the visual experience competes with the tactile (touching) experience in shaping how we perceive objects. The results of this research will change how we create learning materials and assistive devices for those who are blind or visually impaired.

For more information about this and other ERI projects, please visit the Projects page of the Research Institute site.

There is a pressing need for scientific low-vision research because the effects of vision loss are not well understood or documented and therapeutic and rehabilitative techniques are in their infancy. The Envision Research Institute is ideally suited to undertake such research because Envision has a large and diverse blind/low-vision clientele, outstanding clinical expertise, excellent ties to researchers at other institutions, and an institutional environment highly supportive of research.
- George T. Timberlake, PhD
Research Scientist
Director, Low Vision Research Laboratory
Kansas City VA Medical Center