NSF Awards $4 Million to Columbia-led Northeast Big Data Innovation Hub

Columbia builds and coordinates partnerships to identify high-priority needs and collaborate on data-driven initiatives to solve problems unique to the region

June 19, 2019

The National Science Foundation (NSF) has awarded $4 million to the Columbia-led Northeast Big Data Innovation Hub to continue its work in tackling some of the biggest challenges facing the northeastern United States.

The Northeast Big Data Hub is one of four U.S. regional innovation hubs funded by NSF to coordinate expertise and apply data-driven solutions to problems in such areas as health care, energy, finance, urbanization and education that impact communities and cities.

As the lead agency for the Northeast, Columbia identifies high-priority needs in the region and builds and coordinates partnerships to collaborate on projects that can bring about the greatest impact.

Since its launch in 2015, the Northeast hub has built a network of more than 200 partner organizations—including universities, foundations, private research organizations and companies—to focus on initiatives from reducing barriers for data sharing to integrating health data from traditional and novel sources. For example, a project currently under development is creating one of the first data warehouses to integrate environment exposure and clinical data for large-scale health research.

Jeannette M. Wing, the Avanessians Director of the Data Science Institute at Columbia and principal investigator for the Northeast Big Data initiative, said the new NSF award will allow the hub to expand its work in two ways: “First, by addressing cross-cutting themes on data privacy and data ethics to ensure positive social impact, and second, by coordinating with the other regional hubs toward a national network of data science institutions.”

For more information, read the release