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Joachim Bering's etching of the city of Königsberg, Prussia, as of 1613 (now Kaliningrad, Russia).
Joachim Bering's etching of the city of Königsberg, Prussia, as of 1613 (now Kaliningrad, Russia).

Campus Bridging community needs assessment

In early 2009 National Science Foundation’s (NSF) Advisory Committee for Cyberinfrastructure (ACCI) charged six different task forces to make strategic recommendations to the NSF in strategic areas of cyberinfrastructure: Campus Bridging; Data; Grand Challenges and Virtual Organizations; High Performance Computing; Software and Tools; and Work Force Development.  

That starting point led to a variety of efforts to collect community input on the topic of campus bridging. This web site brings together information gathered through several activities related to the general theme of Campus Bridging, some funded via grant awards from the NSF, some led by academic institutions and facilitated by planning grants from the NSF, and some taken on by academic institutions out of interest in this topic.

In order to define and specify its area of concern, we offer the following two definitions:

Cyberinfrastructure consists of computational systems, data and information management, advanced instruments, visualization environments, and people, all linked together by software and advanced networks to improve scholarly productivity and enable knowledge breakthroughs and discoveries not otherwise possible.  [From the EDUCAUSE and CASC (Coalition for Academic Scientific Computing) joint report on campus cyberinfrastructure, "Developing a Coherent Cyberinfrastructure from Local Campus to National Facilities".]


Campus bridging is the seamlessly integrated use of cyberinfrastructure operated by a scientist or engineer with other cyberinfrastructure on the scientist’s campus, at other campuses, and at the regional, national, and international levels as if they were proximate to the scientist, and when working within the context of a Virtual Organization (VO) make the ‘virtual’ aspect of the organization irrelevant (or helpful) to the work of the VO.

In general terms this definition of campus bridging could be expanded from ‘scientist or engineer’ to ‘researcher or educator’ or to ‘scholar’ more generally. In other words, how do we bridge among different cyberinfrastructures, wherever deployed, to better address the rapidly increasing needs of science and engineering, and empower researchers to use these different CI deployments transparently to make new discoveries?

This web site contains links to several web sites related to three NSF-funded workshops related to the general theme of campus bridging, as well as several other reports. In addition, this web site includes links to a draft of the final report of the NSF ACCI Task Force on Campus Bridging so that members of the community may offer comments on it (either anonymously or not, and in the form of brief commentaries or position papers).