October 20, 2016

Discovery Park launches new program to support bold proposals

"The Discovery Park Big Idea Challenge" is a new program that will provide resources to interdisciplinary teams of Purdue faculty and students pursuing bold proposals involving interdisciplinary teams to address global challenges.

The program will fund selected teams for up to two years (depending on scope of the proposal) with a pool of strategic investment resources.

The themes for the Big Idea Challenge align with Discovery Park's strategic theme framework. In addressing these themes, successful proposals will be multifaceted, involving both social sciences and STEM faculty, outlining the contribution of each to the overall project. Topics can focus on several themes:

One Health: The science of animal and human disease, and the future of health care.

Sustainability: The interconnected themes of energy, climate change, food security, water, infrastructure and resiliency, and the environment.

Global security and defense innovation, including Third Offset technologies: Autonomy, robotics, cognitive systems, hypersonics; policy studies; energetics and propulsion; cybersecurity; rapid prototyping and manufacturing; and related themes.  

Digital/Nano: All aspects of nano- and nano-bio technology; the Internet of Things development and applications; data science development and applications to the future of agriculture, energy, manufacturing, transportation, health care and other fields such as social sciences and the humanities; ethics and policy aspects of data science and digital technology applications; the future of nanoelectronics, photonics, and computing, both architectures and algorithms.

These projects will position the University as a leader in generating new insights and game-changing, disruptive contributions to solving global challenges in health, security and sustainability, says Tomás Díaz de la Rubia, chief scientist and executive director of Discovery Park.

Proposals should outline how the team will work with at least one, and preferably more than one, Discovery Park research center and should be endorsed, via email to the Discovery Park executive director, by at least one center director. Center directors may support as many proposals as they wish. Proposals should incorporate elements related to entrepreneurship and policy dimensions of the global challenge, as appropriate.

Proposals are due on Dec 20. Please refer to the linked document for proposal details.

A question-and-answer reception with Díaz de la Rubia will take place at 4-5 p.m. Nov. 1 in the atrium of Gerald D. and Edna E. Mann Hall in Discovery Park.

Teams interested in submitting a proposal are welcome to participate in the Agile Strategy Lab Working Sessions, which are scheduled for 3-5 p.m. Nov. 10 and Nov. 11 in Burton D. Morgan Center for Entrepreneurship, Room 129. Agile Strategy Labs are designed to assist research teams with developing their proposals.

Research teams will be notified by Jan. 24 if their proposal will advance to the final selection round. Finalists will give oral presentations of their proposals on Feb. 23 to the selection committee. These presentations will be open to the public. Winners will be announced on March 1.

Those interested in collaborating with Discovery Park centers for proposals and project endorsements should contact Ed Morrison, director of the Purdue Agile Strategy Lab, at efmorris@purdue.edu.

Additional questions can be directed to Cliff Wojtalewicz, assistant director of Discovery Park, at cliffw@purdue.edu.

Writer: Pam Burroff-Murr, 765-496-3381, burroff@purdue.edu
Source: Cliff Wojtalewicz, 765-496-3961, cliffw@purdue.edu

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