Kenneth G. Furton

Professor, Executive Director, Global Forensic and Justice Center

FIU Chief Scientific Officer and Provost Emeritus Designee

Office: MARC 238

Phone: 305-348-0022


Specialty: STEM Executive Board Member


Dr. Kenneth G. Furton is the executive director of the Global Forensic and Justice Center and the chief scientific officer of Florida International University. He is a distinguished university professor in the Department of Chemistry and Biochemistry and a world-leading scholar in forensic chemistry focused on trace detection and olfaction. From 2007 to 2014, he served as dean of the College of Arts and Sciences, which he reorganized into three mission-based interdisciplinary schools to address some of the biggest issues facing society, raising $50M in philanthropic gifts and doubling research funding to $60M annually. From 2014 to 2022 he served as provost, executive vice president and chief operating officer of FIU where he has led the development and implementation of two FIU strategic plans helping to create a dynamic, results-oriented university with dramatic improvements in student success and research preeminence including simultaneously doubling the four-year graduation rates to over 60%, doubling research expenditures to $250M annually and a 30 fold increase in patents to more than 60 annually achieving a Top 20 patent ranking. He also helped secure over $100 million in philanthropic gifts and FIU moved from #8 to #1 in the state of Florida performance-based funding rankings. Under his leadership FIU was the most improved R1 university in the nation in U.S. News rankings, improving 54 spots in five years to No. 78 public and ranked No. 17 in Innovation and No. 5 in Social Mobility. Deeply committed to the academy, Dr. Furton has supervised the research of more than 140 students and been continuously funded for more than three decades, totaling more than $10 million in grants. He has 26 patents, 2 books and 221 peer-reviewed publications with more than 8,000 citations and an h-index of over 50. He is a member of Phi Beta Kappa and an elected fellow of the National Academy of Inventors as well as the American Academy of Forensic Sciences. He has received significant attention in recent years for ground-breaking work using dogs and sensors to detect humans, drugs, currency, accelerants, explosives, mass storage devices, invasive species and medical conditions including the coronavirus disease. His researching and deployment of COVID-19 detector dogs during the global pandemic reached an audience of over 2 billion worldwide.

Research Areas

Analytical Chemistry, Forensic Science, Physicochemical studies and applied aspects of gas, liquid, and supercritical fluid. chromatography, supercritical fluid extraction, solid phase microextraction, forensic chemistry, arson and explosives analysis and canine detection of chemicals.