Department of Defense looks to Analytics Research Institute and UW-Madison for Help in Developing Systems to Evaluate Science Research
Prestigious Minerva Research Initiative Award of $2.1 Million Fuels Work
March 1, 2022
Bethesda, MD –
Artificial intelligence, including machine learning, is changing the way the Department of Defense (DoD) is evaluating its work as a national funder of science research. To advance this effort, the University of Wisconsin-Madison and the Analytics Research Institute (ARI) have received a 3-year, $2.1 million Minerva Initiative Award grant to build a data and analytic infrastructure to support the DoD in its role as a science funder. This new infrastructure will be used to generate machine learning and other artificial intelligence approaches for identifying research portfolio risks and opportunities. The ability to distill information at this level is expected to inform science policymaking nationally.
Minerva Initiative Awards provide grants to sustain university-based, social science studies on areas of strategic importance to U.S. national security policy. Grants are awarded on an annual basis for research projects that typically last three years.
“The DoD is a huge funder of scientific research and with this comes lots of data, information, and details,” said UW-Madison Information School assistant professor Ian Hutchins who is the PI on the project. “Our work will focus on developing an information infrastructure to identify risks and find opportunities in the portfolio of work.”
The research conducted by this grant will address the government’s need to track and demonstrate impact of funded research while simultaneously being good stewards of investment. The DoD community will greatly benefit from research into effective computational methods to detect and correct misalignment of research topics with leadership’s strategic goals. This will enable key decision-makers to evaluate the health of DoD programs and pursue promising opportunities. Ultimately, this will “lead to more improvements in human health and more innovation in the economy arising from research funding,” explains Dr. Hutchins.
“This is a great opportunity to leverage our background in AI and data analytics to move forward the field of data-driven decision making within the DoD,” said Paula Fearon, CEO, The ARI. “The Analytics Research Institute is delighted to collaborate with Assistant Professor Ian Hutchins at UW Madison on this project.
Learn more about the Minerva Award and Department of Defense work at:
About the Analytics Research Institute
The Analytics Research Institute (ARI) is dedicated to fundamentally improving the way decisions are made. The ARI provides training, resources, and technical solutions to data-driven decision makers. The ARI will construct an end-to-end dataset of linked DoD data from research funding to applied outcomes.
About UW-Madison Information School
The UW-Madison Information School is a leading source of scholarship and educator of leaders in the creation, retrieval, use, and curation of information, commitment to equity of information access, and promotion of the public good. The Information School is a founding department of the School of Computer, Data and Information Sciences.
About the Department of Defense Minerva Research Initiative
The Minerva Research Initiative supports social science research aimed at improving our basic understanding of security, broadly defined. All supported projects are university-based and unclassified, with the intention that all work be shared widely to support thriving stable and safe communities.