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Subject: 2021 Research Infrastructure Advocacy

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[research-infrastructure-advocacy] Outline of Questions for next week's Research Infrastructure Focus Groups

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  • From: Rob Vietzke <>
  • To: "" <>
  • Subject: [research-infrastructure-advocacy] Outline of Questions for next week's Research Infrastructure Focus Groups
  • Date: Fri, 16 Apr 2021 21:47:08 +0000

Dear Colleagues,


Next week, we will meet in groups to discuss the Biden Administration’s ambitious set of investment priorities for infrastructure, including a focus on research infrastructure. The package is in a formative stage, and now is an opportune time for the research infrastructure community to provide a vision that defines infrastructure more broadly and in a way that this investment will have a transformative impact on research infrastructure, competitiveness, and inclusivity. 


Through the focus groups that will convene next week, we need to hear your stories and vision. Tell us your vision for how people, software, hardware, facilities and sustainability can come together in a 21st century definition of “infrastructure” that advances American competitiveness, inclusivity, facilities, security and STEM workforce to support research, science and education


The focus groups will be led by a seasoned facilitator, Christine Goodheart, and we have limited each group to 3-8 community members from different backgrounds. Christine will be prepared to prompt the conversation with the questions offered below. In addition, we expect you may have other areas or questions you wish to explore, which we will welcome. 


Each of you should have already received a calendar invite with zoom contact information. Please let us know if you have not received an invite. We do intend to record these sessions for transcription which we hope will aid in drafting the resulting paper. (The recordings will not be made public.)


We look forward to seeing you next week!



Focus Group Preparatory Questions:

  • How would you envision transformational cyberinfrastructure for US Research and Education over the next 5 to 10 years?  Think beyond just physical infrastructure.
  • Are there particular ways that cyberinfrastructure can support what have been called “the grand challenges:”
  • Help create the industries and jobs of the future;
  • Expand the frontiers of human knowledge about ourselves and the world around us;
  • Help tackle important problems related to energy, health, education, the environment, national security, and global development; and
  • Serve as a “North Star” for collaboration between the public and private sectors.
Are there areas where the United States is not leading or falling behind that are threats to US research leadership? What are the key aspects, needs and success factors for the next 10 years? When you think about the whole ecosystem of software, people, trust and identity, security, cloud and network, what are the gaps we need to fill in the next 10 years? What role should security play in the “best” cyberinfrastructure for US Research and Education? 

  • How can our country leverage national investment in research infrastructure to expand access to a broader set of institutions (and talent) in order to also enable STEM instruction and access to STEM instructional resources?
  • How do we do a better job in recognizing and supporting untapped talent at institutions that have not traditionally been the center of research excellence?


  • Do you have thoughts about how we get from where we are to where we should be — the best?  How do we take advantage of current and imminent federal and state investments to achieve this goal?  Will you and your institutions be part of this effort and, if so, how? 
  • In your area of interest, is there a financial ballpark for the level of investment that would be needed?



  • [research-infrastructure-advocacy] Outline of Questions for next week's Research Infrastructure Focus Groups, Rob Vietzke, 04/16/2021

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