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Broadening Access to Bridge the Gap between Data Innovation and Computing Infrastructure

National Data Platform logo atop a digital globe.

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The San Diego Supercomputer Center (SDSC) at UC San Diego and the University of Utah (Utah) have announced a national-scale pilot project, called the National Data Platform (NDP), aimed at a service ecosystem to make access to and use of scientific data open and equitable across a broad range of communities, including traditionally underrepresented researchers.

Led by SDSC and Utah’s Scientific Computing and Imaging Institute (SCI), and in partnership with the EarthScope Consortium, the $6 million NDP pilot is funded by the U.S. National Science Foundation. The pilot will serve as a federated and extensible data and service ecosystem to foster innovation, discoveries and collaboration through the equitable access and use of science data and leveraging existing national cyberinfrastructure capabilities.

Such access and use will ensure responsible data-driven research to address urgent national and global issues such as climate change and environmental sustainability.

Additionally, with the increasing potential of artificial intelligence (AI) to enhance and accelerate solutions to many scientific and societal problems, broad and equitable access to AI-ready data repositories is essential in developing and deploying responsible AI models and enabling everyone to be a part of AI-integrated solutions.

“NDP aims to bridge the gaps between data innovations and computing infrastructure through the combination of a data hub and an extensible service platform. Carefully designed workflows based on user needs assessment aim to bring equity for everyone to participate in AI-integrated solutions for research discoveries and global societal challenges,” SDSC’s Chief Data Science Officer and NDP Principal Investigator Ilkay Altintas said.

SDSC Director Frank Würthwein explained that “NDP builds a data and knowledge curation layer on top of low level content delivery networks like the Open Science Data Federation, thus leveraging prior and contemporary investments in cyberinfrastructure across dozens of academic institutions.”

Utah’s SCI Director Manish Parashar said, “With the growing importance of data to all aspects of science and society, there is an urgent and critical need for open and equitable access to scientific data. Open and equitable access to scientific data can democratize science and transform society. NDP aims to create a robust, scalable and agile data platform that can enable such access.”

According to SCI Research Computer Scientist and NDP Co-Principle Investigator Ivan Rodero,  NDP redefines cyberinfrastructure by setting new standards for data access and collaborative science. “NDP will enable a seamless integration of data services, ensuring that every researcher has the required tools to push the boundaries of discovery,” he said.

About NDP

NDP is a federated and extensible data and service ecosystem aimed at promoting collaboration, innovation and open and equitable use of data on top of existing national cyberinfrastructure and cloud capabilities. The platform aims to remove barriers involving access and use of data and computing.

About SDSC

The San Diego Supercomputer Center at the University of California San Diego is a leader in high-performance and data-intensive computing and cyberinfrastructure. SDSC provides resources, services and expertise to the local, regional and national research community, including industry and academia. It supports hundreds of multidisciplinary programs spanning a wide variety of domains.

About SCI

The Scientific Computing and Imaging (SCI) Institute is a multidisciplinary research institute at the University of Utah. SCI is internationally recognized as a leader in visualization, scientific computing and image analysis, focusing on the transformation of science and society through translational research and innovation in computer, computational and data science.

Learn more about research and education at UC San Diego in: Artificial Intelligence

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