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Theme, Vision, and Goals


The Dependable Data Driven Discovery (D4) program is a unique transdisciplinary research and training program whose goal is to achieve quality assurance for data driven discovery from biological data. The program will build on existing research and education strengths at Iowa State University, a strong culture of interdisciplinary collaborations, the outreach missions of the university as a land grant university, and a strong emphasis on making ISU a welcoming and inclusive campus. 


The D4 program will produce a new generation of biological data scientists, biomedical engineers, and data scientists with a deep understanding of risks and mitigation methods to provide quality assured data-driven scientific discoveries and engineering inventions. Ultimately, the trainees of the D4 program will learn data-science skills that are applicable to many different problems. D4 trainees will learn analysis and stewardship of these data in a rigorous manner, and develop analytical skills in a wide range of biological and other applications. The graduates of this program will contribute to the increase in awareness of trustworthy data science for industry partners, non-profit organizations, government, high school students and teachers in Iowa, and the general public. 


The program has the following goals: Advance, Graduates, Inclusive, Sustainability (AGIS)

  • Goal A (Advance):  Advance knowledge and understanding of dependability throughout different stages of data science lifecycles with domain experts in the loop. 
  • Goal G (Graduates): Produce knowledgeable, skillful, and ethically informed graduates.  
  • Goal I (Inclusive): Create an inclusive NRT training program that leads to a sustained non-negligible increase in diversity in D4 graduate programs.
  • Goal S (Sustainability): Establish a successful graduate training program that continues beyond the NRT funding and has a long lasting broader impact to the public.