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Frequently Asked Questions

What are the Center's focus areas?

CVDI brings both synergy and complementary data science and big data research initiatives in the areas of data acquisition and management, analytics, visualization & human interaction, and applications to drive innovation in visual and decision informatics. The research topics within the analytics domain include visual analytics, predictive analytics, augmented intelligence, data summarization, deep learning, complex systems analysis, evolutionary optimization, agent-based models and simulation, privacy-preserving learning, and meta-learning. New visualization and human-computer interaction topics include interactive visualization, human-computer interaction modeling, cognitive assistance, and immersive analytics. Topics in data management include big data platforms, knowledge organization, data fusion and integration, parallel processing of massively large datasets, and green computing. The Center also brings complementary expertise in health informatics, biomedicine, energy, computational law, education, cybersecurity, disaster management, advanced manufacturing, psychology, and environmental science.

What is a National Science Foundation Industry-University Cooperative Research Center (IUCRC)?

CVDI is a multi-university, industry-sponsored research center established in February 2012 and supported by the NSF’s Directorate for Computer and Information Science and Engineering.

The IUCRC program is an established and proven model for companies to acquire external technologies through open innovation by partnering with universities. It is supported through membership fees from the Industry, grant money from NSF, and commitments of participating universities. To industry, government, and other organizations with research needs, the NSF IUCRC program provides the means to leverage research and development (R&D) investments with multi-university centers renowned for innovative research capabilities.

The IUCRC program’s cooperative model enables the creation of an industry-relevant, pre-competitive research portfolio, via the formation of multi-member, sustained partnerships between industry, academia, and government. NSF supports the development and evolution of IUCRCs by providing a financial and procedural framework for membership and operations, in addition to best practices learned over decades of fostering public/private partnerships that provide significant value to the nation, industry, university faculty, and students.

CVDI is one of the few IUCRCs that has an international presence. This international expansion of the IUCRC program offers a unique opportunity to ensure US competitiveness in a global economy and allow the development of the next-generation workforce that is global in nature and has a perspective on socio-economic issues that transcends cultural boundaries. There are more than 2000 students engaged at IUCRCs on a yearly basis. Each year about 1000 students graduate through these IUCRC sites and approximately 30% of these students are hired by the IAB member companies. These numbers demonstrate the strong role that IUCRCs play in building our nation’s workforce.

How does the CVDI IUCRC Process Work?

The research conducted by CVDI is done in collaboration with an Industry Advisory Board (IAB) that ensures through the feedback loop and voting process that it aligns with the emerging needs of the consortium and its IAB members.

What are the benefits of joining CVDI?

CVDI’s value proposition is to offer a low-cost, low-risk venue for its members from industry and government agencies to validate their early-stage innovations with the involvement of university faculty, post-doctoral scholars, researchers, and students.

Members of the CVDI Industry Advisory Board (IAB) have access to leading-edge developments in data science, big data, analytics, and visual and decision informatics. IAB members guide the direction of the Center’s research projects. Members will also have access to the interdisciplinary knowledge base from academic researchers and engage with other industry advisory board members to explore potential opportunities. The following are highlights of membership benefits:

  • CVDI provides low-cost, low-risk precompetitive research. A very high percentage of the project funds support research and the Center charges only 10% overhead project funds generated via membership fees.
  • CVDI generates considerable intellectual property including two major industry breakthroughs, 111 invention disclosures, and 217 peer-reviewed publications.
  • The Center provides access to non-exclusive royalty-free licenses to the intellectual property generated from all the projects. Exclusive licensing options may be available under special circumstances.
  • Formal periodic project reviews along with continuous informal interaction and timely access to reports, papers and intellectual property generated by the Center.
  • Access to a high-quality student pool (a majority are Ph.D. students) who collaborate with industry research partners. This partnership provides students exposure to real-world research problems and enables companies to conduct research with less investment, and evaluate and attract top talent.
  • One-stop access to a world-class research program. From 2012-2021, the center has completed over 128 projects with 97 academic faculty and research scientists, and over 213 undergraduate and graduate students.
  • Highly collaborative environment with added flexibility for industry members to construct joint research projects with faculty and other industry, and team up with faculty to pursue joint federal grant opportunities.
  • Access to state-of-the-art big data research facilities such as the Visual Analytics Sandbox for IAB projects.
  • The ability for industry members to propose research problems that are most relevant to the CVDI research areas.
  • Professional Development opportunities such as co-author peer-reviewed articles with CVDI researchers and co-present at professional conferences with CVDI researchers.
  • University site visits offer a broader understanding of the research status, accomplishments and capabilities, and interests of the researchers and the universities
  • Recruitment opportunities to attract outstanding graduate students. During the first two phases of CVDI, over 213 students were supported by CVDI research activities and grants.
  • Opportunity to network and collaborate with other Industry Advisory Board members to explore joint ventures.

In summary, the CVDI value proposition is to offer a low-cost, low-risk venue for the industry and government agencies to validate the early-stage innovation with the involvement of university faculty, post-doctorate scholars, and students.

Can a small business join CVDI?

Annual memberships for small businesses are available at a reduced rate (as defined by the U.S. Small Business Administration). Small business members benefit from a greater ROI and can qualify for additional funding and subsidized fees, for Small Business Innovation Research and Small Business Technology Transfer (SBIR/STTR) grants obtained from the NSF.

How much does it cost to be an IAB member?

The cost of an annual membership in CVDI is $50K. The small Business annual membership price is $20K. Currently, a company making a $50K membership investment is receiving over a 42:1 leverage. CVDI does allow for companies to purchase more than one membership (not to exceed two seats on the IAB) thus providing the company additional IAB slots and increased voting privileges.

How are the IAB payments handled?

Payment of membership fees is made to the sponsoring University as a lump sum effective March 1st or in four equal quarterly installments on the 1st day of March, June, September, and December of each year of sponsorship.

Who are the current IAB members?

Current industry members are supporting projects beginning in the fall of 2021 and ending in the summer of 2022. Industry members are listed on the home page.

Is there a list of CVDI-related publications?

Past and current research topics as well as all Center publications are available to IAB member companies via the CVDI collaboration portal. See Publications

Can IAB members license CVDI research?

IAB members are entitled to a non-exclusive, royalty-free license to the results of the Center research during their active membership. Exact details, as well as exclusive royalty options, can be found in the CVDI Industrial Member Agreement.

Are there opportunities for dedicated/exclusive royalty research through CVDI?

Please speak with your sponsoring university for options on exclusive enhancement contracts that can be layered on top of your IAB membership.

What is the process for joining CVDI?

The process for joining the Industry Advisory Board is very straightforward:

  • Meeting of interested parties between the sponsoring university and the potential member company is held, on an on-demand basis, to review, partnership agreement and identify mutually beneficial areas of research;
  • IAB contract signed by both parties, and
  • First annual/quarterly payment made to sponsoring university.

What are my responsibilities as an IAB member?

The IAB strongly influences the Center’s strategic direction and research focus by having a leadership role in the selection and evaluation of research projects. Company commitment and IAB participation are key to a successful partnership.

Responsibilities include:

  • Meet financial deadlines regarding membership fees
  • Provide direction to potential CVDI research areas
  • Participate in research project reviews
  • Vote on project funding
  • Attend Fall/Spring IAB Workshops
  • Provide mentorship to PIs and graduate students
  • Connect with CVDI Researchers and other IAB members to develop collaborative relationships

Other questions?

Interested in becoming a CVDI Industry Advisory Board Member or have any questions about membership? Let us come visit your company to better understand your challenges and demonstrate the benefits of a CVDI partnership, as well as, share some of our success stories.

about/frequently_asked_questions.txt · Last modified: 2023/08/11 10:28 by andrea.frey