CMM projects recognized during rector Vivaldi visit to Harvard and MIT

CMM projects recognized during rector Vivaldi visit to Harvard and MIT

The recognition of the work of the National Laboratory of High-Performance Computing, Harvard-Chile School of Data Sciences, and other projects of the Center for Mathematical Modeling were key issues of the visit by Universidad de Chile rector Ennio Vivaldi to American universities. Alejandro Maass and Eduardo Vera from CMM, and Miguel Allende from the Genome Regulation Center joined on the committee, too, and hold meetings with MIT and Harvard University authorities in order to strengthen collaboration with Casa de Bello.

Enhancing work with Harvard

The group met with different researchers and authorities at Harvard’s School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS): Institute of Applied Computational Sciences (IACS) scientific director Pavlos Protopapas, SEAS executive director Cathy Chute, and research & education dean Fawwaz Habbal. The group also visited the refurbished Glass Flowers Gallery at Harvard Natural History Museum, directed by researcher and curator Scott Fulton.

“We talked a lot about the possibilities offered by Carén of transdisciplinarity and interaction with the state, the private world, the environment and the state universities of our country,” Vivaldi said of the project in the commune of Pudahuel. “It’s an opportunity to develop Big Data projects and entrepreneurship in Latin America.”

Vera emphasized the decade of collaboration between IACS and CMM in big data, especially in Astroinformatics: “We have had an active exchange of students and academics between Harvard and Universidad de Chile.” Now, data analysis is not only an issue for the astronomy, but for many areas. So, the challenges we have to face together have many parallels. Then, this type of collaborative work is strategic for institutions. “

Centers of excellence and challenges for the future

Data analysis was an issue addressed in the meetings with Ned Strong and Brian Farrel, executive director and academic director at David Rockefeller for Latin American Studies (DRCLAS), SEAS Dean Frank Doyle, LASPAU-Harvard director Angelica Natera, academic at Harvard-Smithsonian Center for Astrophysics Alyssa Goodman, and Protopapas. These reunions also had the attendance of David Parkes and Francesca Dominici, co-directors of the recently created Harvard Data Science Initiative, which coordinates the management and analysis of data at the institutional level and across all its scientific projects.

Alejandro Maass said that the common challenge of Chilean and North American institutions working with complex amounts of information has to do with “how centers organize themselves to systematize and organize data volumes in all disciplines, regardless of how they have worked for many years”.

In that line, he explained, “Harvard has taken the initial strategy of its Data Science Initiative, which is now being transformed into a very transversal Institute, with many centers converging. I would say that in CMM we are in the same situation, same Stage of evolution.That is why the interesting thing is that we not only share the scientific strategic points of view but also realize the timing in which all the centers in the world are, From our point of view, we are in a point very similar”.

For Eduardo Vera, a challenge is to “generate data management experts.” And Protopapas highlighted the value of multidisciplinarity: “Many believe that a separate doctorate should be put together in data science, while others believe that rather than having to prepare experts if different areas that they themselves can analyze and work with large volumes of information, which can be done with a masters of a highly interdisciplinary nature.”

The group also met Juan Gabriel Valdés, Chilean ambassador to the United States, in a meeting with students and academic residents in Massachusetts, as well as members of ChileMass. “The university has great prestige gained abroad. Its doctors, professors, and students participate in studies in the main universities of the world and especially in the United States”, said the diplomatic.

The ambassador stressed that “the dialogue between students and professors of these universities was encouraged, who listened attentively to their views on the transformations of education in Chile, the importance of state universities in the country and, above all, , The central role of the University of Chile in higher education, in the creation of ideas and proposals for a different vision of development for our country. Therefore, I think this visit has a lot of significance, and I am very grateful to have I could contribute to her and to accompany her.”

Posted on Jun 8, 2017 in Frontpage, News