• NITRD Coordination Areas

    The Networking and Information Technology Research and Development (NITRD) Program's member agencies coordinate their NITRD research activities and plans by Program Component Areas (PCAs) or program focus areas. For each PCA, agency representatives meet in an Interagency Working Group (IWG) to exchange information and collaborate on research plans and activities such as testbeds, workshops, and cooperative solicitations.

    NITRD Coordination Areas

Big Data

Jump to: navigation, search

  • Big Data

    The Big Data Interagency Working Group (BD IWG) focuses on R&D to improve the management and analysis of large-scale data, the purpose of which is to develop the ability to extract knowledge and insight from large, diverse, and disparate sources of data, including mechanisms for data capture, curation, management, and access.

    Big Data


Big Data Interagency Working Group (IWG)


The Big Data Interagency Working Group (BD IWG) focuses on R&D to improve the management and analysis of large-scale data, the purpose of which is to develop the ability to extract knowledge and insight from large, diverse, and disparate sources of data, including mechanisms for data capture, curation, management,visualization, and access.

The BD IWG, formerly known as the Big Data Senior Steering Group, was formed in early 2011 to identify current big data research and development activities across the Federal Government; offer opportunities for coordination among agencies, academia, and the private sector; and help establish the goals for a National Big Data R&D Initiative. In the interim, many agencies established Big Data programs and initiatives and the focus of the group turned to synthesizing lessons learned and developing a cross agency Federal Big Data R&D Strategic Plan. This Plan is scheduled for release in early 2016. Moving forward, the Big Data IWG will continue to promulgate the Strategic Plan, further explore the strategies outlined in it, and address issues related to large scale data management as they arise.



Dr. Susan Gregurick

Susan Gregurick, Ph.D.
Director, Division of Biomedical Technology, Bioinformatics, and Computational Biology
National Institute of General Medical Sciences
National Institute of Health

Rance Cleaveland, Ph.D.

Rance Cleaveland, Ph.D.
Division Director, Computing and Communication Foundations (CISE//CCF)
National Science Foundation


Major Activities

Human Computer Information & Information Management Task Force << HCI&IM TF was sunset in March, 2019. >>

The purpose of the HCI&IM TF is to support development of a "science of visualization", to enable development of a framework or taxonomy of visualization tasks, relevant perceptual and cognitive principles, and measures for evaluating the understandability or effectiveness of visualizations. The HCI&IM TF will also support development of useful, end-to-end visualization tools that efficiently and effectively support data access and use, scalability of the tools and infrastructure, and visual presentation to the individual end user.

A national network of Big Data Regional Innovation Hubs

In November of 2014, the National Science Foundation published a Request for Input (RFI) about the establishment of a national network of Regional Innovation Hubs that would foster cross-sector collaborations and partnerships around Big Data. To convene local stakeholders and further the discussion, a series of 15 day-long intensive design workshops (i.e. charrettes) are taking place around the country in April, 2015. In these charrettes, stakeholders from academia, industry, government and non-profit sectors will discuss how an Innovation Hub might be structured and governed as to best address the challenges and leverage the opportunities around Big Data within its region.

To establish this national network, the National Science Foundation has announced a funding opportunity: the Big Data Regional Innovation Hubs (BD Hubs) program.

The National Big Data R&D Initiative

Aiming to make the most of the fast-growing volume of digital data, in March 2012, the Obama Administration announced the “Big Data Research and Development Initiative.” By improving our ability to extract knowledge and insights from large and complex collections of digital data, the initiative promises to help solve some the Nation’s most pressing challenges. The Big Data Interagency Working Group continues to work with the White House Office of Science and Technology along with several Federal departments and agencies to help further the goals of the Initiative which strive to:

For additional information, see the White House Press Release, and the Big Data Fact Sheet.

Data to Knowledge to Action

caption=Data to Knowledge to Action

Beginning in the second year of the National Big Data Initiative, the Administration is encouraging multiple stakeholders including federal agencies, private industry, academia, state and local government, non-profits, and foundations, to develop and participate in Big Data innovation projects across the country. The Administration is particularly interested in projects and initiatives that:

For additional information, see the White House Press Release, the New Announcements Fact Sheet, and Progress by Federal Agencies Fact Sheet.

Data to Knowledge to Action: Partnership Updates

Data to Knowledge to Action: Partnership Updates

Since the Data to Knowledge to Action launch in November 2013, partners have been hard at work developing their collaborations and projects that promise to accelerate progress across science, the economy, and society. The following are updates on the projects launched in 2013... more

Calls, Presentations, Workshops, and Events

A NITRD workshop organized by the High-End Computing and Big Data Interagency Working Groups. Purpose: to examine key challenges and opportunities in integrating high performance computing (HPC) with big data (BD) and machine learning (ML); to identify research and development opportunities including practical systems implementation.

Presentation by Shelley Stall, American Geophysical Union (AGU) Director, Data Programs, at Big Data monthly meeting, 08/23/2018. Dr. Stall presented the ASG Enabling FAIR Data Project: a coalition of groups representing the international Earth and space science community, convened by the American Geophysical Union (AGU) and funded by a grant from the Laura and John Arnold Foundation to develop standards that will connect researchers, publishers, and data repositories in the Earth, space, and environmental sciences to enable FAIR (findable, accessible, interoperable, and reusable) data on a large scale.

Presentation given by Allen Dearry, Program Director, NIH, on the National Cancer Institute (NCI) Cancer Research Data Commons, at Big Data IWG meeting on 06/28/2018. Presentation outline: "National Cancer Data Ecosystem; NCI Cancer Research Data Commons; Data Linkages: Cancer Data Aggregator, Encrypted Unique Patient Identifier; Collaboration/coordination: Partnerships, Office of Data Sharing."

This workshop examined current OKN related projects within Federal Agencies, how those projects can collaborate with private sector efforts, and potential next steps. The workshop focused on particular domains, and discuss how to enable an open contributing community. For more information on the workshop please visit http://ichs.ucsf.edu/okn-documents/

Workshop Goal: Managers, funders, and users of digital data repositories are interested in assessing and communicating the impact of such repositories. A systematic approach and well-understood metrics, that may be quantitative or qualitative in nature, are needed to determine “impact.” The goal of this workshop is to identify the current metrics, tools and practices that are effective, and the issues that will require additional research. For more information on the workshop please visit https://www.nitrd.gov/nitrdgroups/index.php?title=DigitalRepositories

2015 Big Data Strategic Initiative Workshop was sponsored by the NITRD Big Data Interagency Working Group in conjunction with Georgetown University, this workshop brought together academics and industry leaders across multiple disciplines to further inform the development of an effective Federal Big Data Research Agenda. For more information on the workshop please visit http://workshops.cs.georgetown.edu/BDSI-2015/

National Academy of Sciences
BDIWG presentations:

The White House Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) and NITRD hosted an event to highlight high-impact collaborations that cross the public, private, academic, and non-profit sectors.

The National Science Foundation issued a request for information encouraging stakeholders to identify multi-stakeholder Big Data projects they would be willing to support to advance core Big Data technologies; harness the power of Big Data to advance national goals; use competitions and challenges; and foster regional innovation.

A workshop to discuss future strategies for managing scientific data and metadata for basic and applied research.

To surface such partnerships and novel approaches that would allow partnerships to scale across the country, this workshop brought together representatives from industry, academia, and government to learn about existing Big Data partnerships, make connections with interested parties, and explore future possibilities.

Presentation and discussion with Professor Joel Cutcher-Gershenfeld. Professor Cutcher-Gershenfeld presented information on the NSF EarthCube initiative including stakeholder survey data (approximately 850 responses).

Select Press Highlights

  • November 4, 2015 -- White House Blog: “Big Announcements in Big Data“
"This week the National Science Foundation (NSF) made some big announcements in Big Data, which will not only improve our ability to extract knowledge and insights from large and complex collections of data, but also help accelerate the pace of discovery in science and engineering, strengthen our national security, and fuel the growth and development of Smart Cities in America..." READ MORE: https://www.whitehouse.gov/blog/2015/11/04/big-announcements-big-data

  • November 12, 2013 -- White House promotes new partnerships as it seeks to make better use of ‘big data’
“The Obama administration plans Tuesday to announce a new set of partnerships that enlist private companies, nonprofits, academics and others in an effort to harness big data to solve national problems. The new alliances come more than a year and a half after the administration established $200 million in big data initiatives aimed at sorting through the massive reams of information collected by the government to glean new insights.” (Source: Washington Post) Read the article.

  • March 14, 2013 (Bloomberg) -- Altman, Groschupf, Mahony, Strawn `Big Data' Value
"Anne Altman, a general manager at International Business Machines Corp., Stefan Groschupf, co-founder and chief executive officer of Datameer Inc., Colin Mahony, senior vice president at Vertica, a unit of Hewlett-Packard Co., and George Strawn, a director at the National Coordination Office, participate in a panel discussion about opportunities in so-called big data services. Bloomberg's Michael Nelson moderates the panel at the Bloomberg Link Big Data Conference in Washington. (Source: Bloomberg)"

Events Calendar

Calendar Address - ical, html