DPI: Submit Your Proposals and Join Experts Groups

Dear colleagues:

As the end of the year approaches, we wanted to share some of the remarkable progress we have made toward the Discovery Partners Institute (DPI) and Illinois Innovation Network (IIN) since the discussion forums at each of our universities earlier this fall.

We have formed the academic working groups that are helping develop DPI’s initial plans and priorities, and the 125 members from across the system who are sharing their talents have been added to our DPI website. We have begun DPI operations in our 20,000-square-foot facility at 200 South Wacker Drive in Chicago, where we are able to host research, education and outreach projects, events, courses, and meetings. We have officially applied for the $500 million in state capital funding that the legislature approved last spring to develop DPI and IIN, which includes the projects at our universities that we outlined at the discussion forums in August. And we have greatly improved our website, transitioning it from a concept site to one that reflects a living, active institute.

We have announced an IIN hub at Northern Illinois University, the first outside of the U of I System’s three universities. We also have had very positive conversations with every four-year public university in the state about becoming an IIN hub, and expect additional hub announcements.

As we continue our work, we hope many more of you will become involved. We invite you to join experts groups organized around DPI’s themes and cross-cutting areas, and to submit proposals for DPI research, education, and engagement activities. The experts groups will provide feedback to guide development of each theme and cross-cutting area. The proposals will produce the first wave of educational, research, and outreach activities at DPI and are eligible for up to $15,000 of seed funding per project.

The proposals will be reviewed on a rolling basis beginning on Dec. 14. The expertise of our faculty and staff is a cornerstone of DPI and IIN, and we look forward to your creative proposals and your input through the experts groups.

Thank you for all you do for the U of I System.


Tim Killeen

Ed Seidel
Vice President for Economic Development and Innovation

Bill Sanders
Interim Director, Discovery Partners Institute

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