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Contact: Christine Payton Feb. 8, 2012
(337) 482-6397, payton@louisiana.edu
University of Louisiana at Lafayette and Drexel University Establish
National Science Foundation Industry/University Cooperative Research Center

In the race to find innovative solutions to our nation’s most pressing big data challenges, two universities are leading the charge. The University of Louisiana at Lafayette and Drexel University have been awarded funding by the National Science Foundation (NSF) to create the Center on Visual and Decision Informatics (CVDI).

In partnering with industry members, the CVDI will serve as a research hub in developing visual and decision support tools and techniques to enable decision makers in government and industry to fundamentally improve the way their organizations’ information is interpreted and analyzed.

This is the first time in history that a Louisiana university has been designated as a NSF Industry/University Cooperative Research Center.

The CVDI is a virtual enterprise between UL Lafayette’s School of Computing and Informatics and The iSchool at Drexel in Philadelphia, Pa. It is funded by the I/UCRC program of the NSF, members from industry and government, and university matching funds.

" With the approval of CVDI by NSF, we are able to leverage the power of industry and two eminent research universities—UL Lafayette and Drexel—working together to address businesses' information challenges and needs,” stated Dr. Robert Twilley, vice president for research at UL Lafayette. “Together, we are solving problems that will address our national priorities in innovation, entrepreneurship, economic development and workforce development."

In particular, the CVDI will bring together analytic, visual and perceptual techniques to enhance industry competitiveness within commercial ecosystems such as information and publishing, healthcare, oil and gas, manufacturing, disaster management, revenue and finance, business process intelligence, e-science, real-time supply chain monitoring/visualization, and network analysis.

“ This initiative, which maximizes an organization’s ability to evaluate and analyze complex data, has tremendous potential. A recent MIT study showed that companies that adopted data-driven, evidence-based decision making increased their productivity 5 to 6 percent, compared to companies that did not. This approach can enhance companies’ ability to compete in the global marketplace,” said Dr. Joseph Savoie, UL Lafayette president.

Only 16 Computer Information and Engineering (CISE) centers exist across the U.S. UL Lafayette and Drexel University now join this elite group with the CVDI, which is the only center in the nation focusing on visual and decision informatics research.

“ The establishment of the CVDI marks an important milestone in the iSchool and Drexel University’s history,” says iSchool Dean David E. Fenske. “With NSF’s help and guidance, the Center will seamlessly integrate areas of our research with the information management needs of many organizations, meanwhile preparing the next generation of data scientists to confront big data challenges.”

For more information about Center on Visual and Decision Informatics (CVDI), visit: http://nsf-cvdi.louisiana.edu.

Document last revised Wednesday, February 8, 2012 1:00 PM

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