Addressing World-Scale Challenges
Computational approaches provide a powerful means for addressing previously unsolvable problems.
Increasingly, computing technologies make the difference in enabling new approaches applied to world-scale challenges in such diverse disciplines as medicine and healthcare, energy and environment, and educational and social progress.
In response to these significant global challenges, the Microsoft Research Faculty Summit 2009 investigated how computing technologies can best help scientists make progress in these important areas. Attendees had the opportunity to participate in creative, open discourse on research topics.
Identifying computational enablers for solving critical social and scientific problems was a main theme for this year’s faculty summit:
- Energy Sustainability. Discussions focused on computing research challenges in data center efficiency and sustainability as well as computational issues related to reducing our carbon footprint.
- Addressing climate change. The sessions will examine how to develop greater understanding of climate dynamics through the evaluation of sensor network approaches, advanced data mining and visualization techniques, and improved computationally-driven climate models.
- Transformational improvement in healthcare. The availability and delivery of solutions for previously elusive healthcare challenges such as HIV-AIDS, diabetes, asthma, obesity, and aging are showing promising results through the collaboration of medical and computational researchers. Ubiquitous cell phone networks around the world are now opening the way to deliver a new level of health care in rural areas where no doctors are available.
Background on the Microsoft Research Faculty Summit
Each year, Microsoft Research hosts an annual faculty summit. Leading academic researchers and educators join with Microsoft researchers to explore the latest research results, collectively discuss the challenges faced by the community, search for the best approaches to meeting those challenges, and identify new research opportunities. The participants’ range of interests and the breadth of the technical areas covered in the program ensure a unique experience and provide a venue for meeting with colleagues and friends across the full range of the computing disciplines.