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University of Wisconsin–Madison

NSF Big Data Regional Innovation Hubs (BD Hubs): Accelerating the Big Data Innovation Ecosystem 2015

To:Chairs and Administrators, Departments in the Biological, Physical & Social Sciences; Associate Deans for Research; School/College Research Administrators
From:Office of the Vice Chancellor for Research & Graduate Education
Date:April 17, 2015
Subject:NSF Big Data Regional Innovation Hubs (BD Hubs): Accelerating the Big Data Innovation Ecosystem 2015 NSF 15-562


Deadline for Internal Review:May 11, 2015

Project Description

In March 2012, the Administration announced the National Big Data Research and Development Initiative, which aims to solve some of the Nation’s most pressing R&D challenges related to extracting knowledge and insights from large, complex collections of digital data. As part of this initiative, the Administration encouraged multiple stakeholders including federal agencies, private industry, academia, state and local governments, non-profits, and foundations, to develop and participate in Big Data research and innovation projects across the country.
To augment ongoing activities and to ignite new Big Data public-private partnerships across the Nation, NSF’s Directorate for Computer and Information Science and Engineering (CISE) is seeking to establish a National Network of Big Data Regional Innovation Hubs (BD Hubs). Each BD Hub would be a consortium of members from academia, industry, and/or government. This solicitation aims to establish four Hubs across distinct geographic regions of the United States, including the Northeast, Midwest, South, and West, as defined later in the Program Description section. Each BD Hub should focus on key Big Data challenges and opportunities for its region of service. The BD Hubs should aim to support the breadth of interested local stakeholders within their respective regions, while members of a BD Hub should strive to achieve common Big Data goals that would not be possible for the independent members to achieve alone.
This solicitation is the first of a multi-phase process meant to develop a National Network of BD Hubs. The first phase will set up the governance structure of each BD Hub’s consortium of members as well as develop approaches to ensure cross-hub collaboration and sustainability over the long term. The next phase will focus on building out various sectors of particular interest to each BD Hub (e.g., transportation, smart cities, health, energy, public safety, and education) so as to advance sector innovation in that region. The final phases will focus on connecting the BD Hubs and their regional sectors into a national Big Data innovation ecosystem.
This solicitation is part of NSF’s Big Data program, which includes: research and infrastructure development; education and workforce development; and multi-disciplinary collaborative teams and communities that address complex science and engineering grand challenges. Before preparing a proposal in response to this or any other Big Data solicitation, applicants are strongly encouraged to review those solicitations and consult with cognizant NSF program officers to determine appropriateness of fit. For example, this solicitation funds the establishment and coordination of a BD Hubs National Network, but is not meant to be a source of funding for new research. By contrast, the BIGDATA solicitation may be more relevant for research funding.
Each project will be funded up to a maximum of $1,250,000 for up to 3 years, subject to the availability of funds. This program will fund up to 4 awards – one award per region is anticipated.


UW-Madison is allowed to submit 1 proposal.


Internal Competition Application Instructions

Applications for Internal Review

To submit your application, follow this link:

• PI Name title, contact information, lead institution
• Title of Proposal- BD Hubs: Midwest: Title
• Brief Project Summary (1 page maximum) of the BD Hubs project, including its Big Data focus areas and education goals, the stakeholders and geographical region involved, and the community (communities) that will be impacted by the BD Hub.
• Project Description (4 page maximum) that clearly identify the goals of the proposed BD Hub and detail a set of measures and metrics for assessing success. It should also include a detailed timeline of activities for the first year and a preliminary timeline for the remaining years of the proposed project period. The project description must also include a detailed collaboration plan, which describes the initial membership of the BD Hub, developed to ensure that the primary Big Data interests of the region are represented.

Sponsor Deadlines

Applications are due to the sponsor by June 24, 2015.