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National Science Foundation

NSF SAVI Awards

The following SAVI awards demonstrate SAVI principles and serve as examples of the diversity that is possible among envisioned virtual institutes.

GLOBAL RESEARCH ON APPLYING INFORMATION TECHNOLOGY TO SUPPORT EFFECTIVE DISASTER MANAGEMENT (CNS 1250260 GRAIT-DM)

With the primary focus on the application of information technology and big data, GRAIT-DM builds on an international and interdisciplinary community of researchers supported by NSF's RAPID mechanism following the Tohoku earthquake and tsunami in Japan. It strengthens and sustains research and education collaborations between the U.S. and Japan to improve the preparedness for, response to, and recovery from disasters. Expertise from multiple disciplines will enable the collection and analysis of vast data sets from environmental sensors and information networks, and from various end users and other big data sources in the emergency preparedness and response community.


YEAST CHROMOSOME SYNTHESIS AND ANALYSIS (MCB 1158201)

This SAVI works to establish a research coordination infrastructure that enables the complete synthesis of the Saccharomyces cerevisiae genome at sites spanning the U.S., Asia, and Europe. It was started by solidifying current collaborations between researchers at Johns Hopkins University, Loyola University of Maryland, and international partners in China, India and Europe. The strategic collaboration on synthesis of individual chromosomes intends to ensure that the entire yeast genome will be completed within a five-year period with leveraged funds and resources from the U.S. and international participating partners and funding agencies.


MAX-PLANCK-PRINCETON RESEARCH CENTER FOR PLASMA PHYSICS (PHY 1144374 )

This award establishes a joint research center in fusion and astro-plasma physics involving two units at Princeton University: its Plasma Physics Laboratory and Department of Astrophysical Sciences; three institutes within the Max Planck Society: the Institute of Plasma Physics at Garching and Greifswald, the Institute for Astrophysics at Garching, and the Institute for Solar System Research at Lindau; and the U.S. Department of Energy. As a SAVI, the center harnesses expertise and fosters interdisciplinary collaboration between the plasma and astrophysics communities, both nationally and internationally, in order to tackle fundamental problems that impede progress in the field. The collaborative research will advance understanding in many areas of theoretical plasma astrophysics, fusion physics, basic plasma experiments and tokamaks.


SAVI: COLLABORATIVE RESEARCH: MATHEMATICS AND CLIMATE CHANGE RESEARCH NETWORK (DMS 1239013)

Supplemental SAVI funding bolsters and expands the work and focus of the Mathematics and Climate Research Network (MCRN). MCRN now focuses on understanding and predicting the climate that will enable the building of effective strategies for sustaining our environment. While such strategies begin and end at the regional or local level, the research of MCRN brings to bear different interests and perspectives from countries around the globe, connecting MCRN with partners in Australia (Climate Change Research Centre at UNSW), India (Tata Institute for Fundamental Research Centre for Applicable Mathematics in Bangalore), the Netherlands (Nonlinear Dynamics of Natural Systems Cluster), and the United Kingdom (Climate Change and Sustainable Futures program at Exeter and the Centre for the Analysis of Time Series at LSE).


SAVI: STUDENT RESEARCH NETWORK IN THE PHYSICS OF LIVING SYSTEMS (PHY 1219334)

The Physics of Living Systems Student Research Network (PoLS SRN) builds bridges of interactive international collaboration among researchers who share research interests in the interface of physics and biology. With a common foundation in the general principles that explain the structure, behavior and evolution of cells and organisms, the next generation of life science researchers needs to be versed in both the methodologies of the physical sciences and the experimental practices of molecular biology. PoLS SRN seeks to better prepare tomorrow's researchers by developing professional and social international, trans-institutional, community-based networks, many at disparate locations, collectively possessing skills, expertise and experiences that span multiple disciplines including physics, engineering and computer sciences, but pursue common research interests.


SAVI: LIFE: LINKED INSTITUTIONS FOR FUTURE EARTH (EAR 1242458)

This project establishes a virtual institute called LIFE, Linked Institutions for Future Earth. LIFE will serve as a hub of international exchange in Earth surface sustainability research, education and public engagement to better understand and quantify the vulnerability of the Earth surface system. LIFE activities focus on seven major interconnected programs: 1. researcher exchange; 2. shared and co-mentored postdoctoral researchers; 3. international shared graduate degree programs; 4. theme-based focused research--mainly experimental and theoretical campaigns; 5. international summer institutes for graduate students and young researchers; 6. data/model sharing for actionable research; and 7. science-to-public international exchange. The project leverages resources on three continents.


SAVI: PRAGMA--ENABLING SCIENTIFIC EXPEDITIONS AND INFRASTRUCTURE EXPERIMENTATION FOR PACIFIC RIM INSTITUTIONS AND RESEARCHERS (OCI 1234983)

This SAVI advances the progress of PRAGMA, the Pacific Rim Applications and Grid Middleware Assembly, and its mission to enable small-to-medium size international groups to conduct collaborative research and education. It is by creating multidisciplinary, multi-institutional scientific expeditions that pair domain scientists with computer scientists who, together, define, develop and deploy international-scale, experimental cyberinfrastructure. Specifically, by engaging PRAGMA's more than 30 members and affiliates around the Pacific Rim, the SAVI funding will launch or extend three scientific expeditions in biodiversity, lake eutrophication and infectious diseases. As a SAVI, PRAGMA will focus on common questions that affect India, China and Southeast Asia while simultaneously broadening engagement of U.S. researchers and graduate students. Principal institutions in the U.S. are the University of Florida, Indiana University, University of Wisconsin and the University of California, San Diego.


SAVI SUPPLEMENT FOR A "THEMATIC NETWORK IN SPATIAL COGNITION" TO SBE/SCIENCE OF LEARNING CENTER, SPATIAL INTELLIGENCE AND LEARNING CENTER

This SAVI will expand and sustain the efforts that the Spatial Intelligence and Learning Center (SILC) had initiated to create a network of international scientific partners to foster integration in an interdisciplinary scientific field of spatial cognition. Significant information concerning spatial cognition has accumulated in many disciplines, including cognitive science, computer science, geography, geographic information science, neuroscience, linguistics, psychometrics, and robotics. These findings and insights, when integrated, will have relevance for education in science, technology, engineering and mathematics, as well as in a wide range of professional fields, including medicine and dentistry, urban planning and traffic modeling, and architecture and design. With new levels of synergy and engagement, SILC will collaborate with a network of international partners in establishing a Thematic Network in Spatial Cognition (TNSC). TNSC involves cooperating institutions from around the world, organized into national networks, each with a lead institution.


SAVI: FINLAND-USA EAGER: INNOVATIONS IN LEARNING AND EDUCATION (DRL 1254189)

This SAVI will create a knowledge network linking a series of projects that involve collaboration among leading STEM educational researchers from the U.S. and Finland, a nation whose students regularly rank at the top in international measures of STEM learning. With a focus on technology-enhanced learning, educational innovation and learning analytics, the goal is to spur innovation at the frontiers of our knowledge of STEM learning. The project will pursue eight sets of activities, including an active web presence; exchanges of early career and teacher researchers; a webinar for researchers, educators and policy makers; the development of research toolkits; virtual and in-person SAVI research meetings; short courses and contributions to research literatures; and conferences that reflect the cross-disciplinary nature of the SAVI.


VISES FOR SAVI: VIRTUAL INSTITUTE FOR THE STUDY OF EARTHQUAKE SYSTEMS: A U.S.-JAPAN PARTNERSHIP IN EARTHQUAKE SCIENCES

This SAVI enhances a partnership involving the Southern California Earthquake Center, the Earthquake Research Institute of Tokyo University and the Disaster Prevention Research Institute of Kyoto University by creating a Virtual Institute for the Study of Earthquake Systems (VISES). VISES synthesizes detailed research on fault systems in different tectonic regions, specifically on well-calibrated regional models in the complementary tectonic settings of Japan and California. The goal is to provide the organizational structure for a coordinated U.S.-Japan effort to integrate a spectrum of physics-based models with seismic hazard analysis. Participating in this research are seismologists, earthquake geologists and tectonic geodesists, as well as mathematicians who study earthquake statistics, computer and computational scientists who design and execute large-scale simulations, physical scientists who study rock behavior, earthquake engineers, social scientists, and decision makers who must forge public policies based on the best available science.


The First Three Pilots in 2011

THE VIRTUAL INSTITUTE FOR MATHEMATICAL AND STATISTICAL SCIENCES (VI-MSS)

Under this SAVI, two existing NSF-funded national mathematical and statistical research institutes are connected with several Indian research institutes. India and the U.S. have strengths in different facets of research in MSS and via the SAVI mechanism are building a long-term, structured collaboration in these foundational sciences that are a key to innovation in a data-centric world. VI-MSS addresses many global challenges related to sustainability, cybersecurity, health, and extraction of useful information from massive and complex data, among others.


WIRELESS INNOVATION BETWEEN FINLAND AND US (Wi.Fi.US)

This SAVI provides a platform for building long-term research and education collaboration between the U.S. and Finland. PIs from eight U.S. institutions are involved in six active NSF awards in the area of dynamic radio spectrum access and have formed the SAVI called WI-FI-US connecting the U.S. group with Finnish counterparts. Wi.Fi.US SAVI activities include research co-operation, researcher exchanges, joint meetings and planned creation of joint demonstrations. For broader impact, a teaching portal for the use of the researcher network will be built to complement other SAVI activities.


THE PHYSICS OF LIVING SYSTEMS STUDENT RESEARCH NETWORK (PoLS SRN)

This network builds bridges for interactive communication between cadres of researchers world-wide who share research interests in the physics of living systems. It is a trans-institutional, community-based network of graduate students and their faculty mentors. The program focuses on the development of professional and social networks among students, at disparate locations, each possessing unique skills, expertise and experiences, but who share research interests, issues, problems and solutions. PoLS SRN started with a small nucleus of researchers and has expanded through inclusive workshops, and continues to grow.

Any opinions, findings, conclusions or recommendations presented in this material are only those of the presenter grantee/researcher, author, or agency employee; and do not necessarily reflect the views of the National Science Foundation.