Cyberinfrastructure workshop attracts leading young researchers

Tom Hacker, associate professor of computer and information technology, led an inaugural cyberinfrastructure workshop in Arlington, Va., in June with Suzanne Shontz, assistant professor of computer science and engineering at The Pennsylvania State University.

Funded by the National Science Foundation’s (NSF) new Office of Cyberinfrastructure, the workshop brought together the country’s leading young researchers (NSF CAREER award recipients) to discuss new topics in the field. Hacker and Shontz are both recent NSF CAREER awardees.

Participants at the workshop learned from senior cyberinfrastructure researchers during keynote sessions and follow-up discussions and made new professional connections with others in their field. Program directors from NSF also attended.

“The workshop really highlighted the broad set of science and engineering areas and how they intersected with cyberinfrastructure,” Hacker said. “It showed how critical cyberinfrastructure is in powering new advances in these disciplines that would not be possible otherwise. Cyberinfrastructure is making new kinds of discovery possible.”

The keynote speakers tackled five overarching topics: grand challenges facing computational science, big data, high-performance computing, visualization and education.

“Our speakers discussed challenges and research results in their respective areas. They also shared their insights on establishing a research career in specific areas,” Shontz said. “We followed the talks with discussion sessions on each theme. These sessions gave us opportunities to establish key outcomes for universities and for NSF in the cyberinfrastructure field.”

Keynote speakers were:

Edward Seidel, director of the NSF Office of Cyberinfrastructure
Miron Livny, professor of computer sciences and director of the Center for High Throughput Computing at University of Wisconsin-Madison
Frederica Darema, manager of the Dynamic Data Driven Applications Systems (DDDAS) Program at the Air Force Office of Scientific Research
Tinsley Oden, director of the Institute for Computational Engineering and Sciences at the University of Texas at Austin.
Chris Johnson, director of the Scientific Computing and Imaging Institute at the University of Utah
Read more about each of the speakers at the workshop Web site.

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