Federal Research Initiative Centers On Big Data Sets | Chemical & Engineering News
Volume 90 Issue 14 | p. 19 | Concentrates
Issue Date: April 2, 2012

Federal Research Initiative Centers On Big Data Sets

Department: Government & Policy
Keywords: Obama, data analysis, big data, federal funding, federal research

Collecting and analyzing the vast amount of digital data created by modern research is one of the biggest challenges facing scientists. The Obama Administration is taking on this problem with a $200 million Big Data Research & Development Initiative unveiled last week. The initiative “promises to transform our ability to use big data for scientific discovery, environmental and biomedical research, education, and national security,” says John P. Holdren, director of the White House Office of Science & Technology Policy. The Departments of Defense, Energy, and Homeland Security, plus NSF, NIH, and the U.S. Geological Survey, will each launch projects to help scientists crunch digital data. The goals are to improve data storage, preservation, sharing, and analysis and to expand the number of workers trained to develop and use these technologies. As one example, NSF and NIH are launching a grants program for scientists who are developing new techniques to analyze large amounts of scientific and engineering data.

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