The National Science Foundation (NSF), Directorate for Biological Sciences, Plant Science Cyber Infrastructure Collaborative (PSCIC) Program Webcast Briefing, September 18, 2006 from 9AM to 1PM EST

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The goal of this program is to create a new type of organization – a cyberinfrastructure collaborative for plant science – that will enable new conceptual advances through integrative, computational thinking. The collaborative will be fluid and dynamic, utilizing new computer, computational science and cyberinfrastructure solutions to address an evolving array of grand challenge questions in plant science. The collaborative will be community-driven, involving plant biologists, computer and information scientists and experts from other disciplines working in integrated teams.

The driving force and organizing principles for the collaborative are the grand challenge questions in plant science. The primary means the collaborative will use to pursue these questions are synthesis activities, such as working/task groups that operate on and off-site, virtual groups that interact remotely, postdoctoral and student fellows, visiting scientists, and the provision of networking and cyberinfrastructure resources that promote broad interaction and participation. The central resources of the collaborative will be computational and cyberinfrastructure capabilities and expertise that are capable of handling large and heterogeneous plant biology data sets. These resources will be used to craft solutions to an evolving array of grand challenge questions. The collaborative will have a small core of staff members to support the activities of collaborative participants working in real and virtual modes. Resident social scientists will assess how the members of the collaborative community are interacting and using collaborative resources.

The structure of the collaborative may be centralized or distributed, such as a central hub with several branches. Proposals submitted in response to this solicitation must therefore present a clear description of the capabilities, responsibilities, and characteristics of the collaborative and a management plan designed to provide strong, central leadership.

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About NSF
The National Science Foundation (NSF) is an independent federal agency created by Congress in 1950 “to promote the progress of science; to advance the national health, prosperity, and welfare; to secure the national defense...” with an annual budget of about $5.5 billion, NSF is the funding source for approximately 20 percent of all federally supported basic research conducted by America’s colleges and universities. In many fields such as mathematics, computer science and the social sciences, NSF is the major source of federal support. MORE

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