Who We Are

The Institute for Interdisciplinary Data Sciences (IIDS) is a research institute within the Office of Research and Economic Development at the University of Idaho. The mission of IIDS is to empower researchers to fully harness the potential of the data revolution by provisioning and administering critical university research infrastructure related to genomics, bioinformatics, research computing, and data science. IIDS is a vibrant home for interdisciplinary research between student, postdoc, and faculty participants. IIDS participants can access support for proposal development and grants management, expertise, infrastructure, training, and professional development activities.


What We Do

IIDS empowers U of I researchers to harness the full potential of modern data science, allowing them to address the world’s toughest challenges.


How We Operate

IIDS administers critical university research infrastructure related to genomics, bioinformatics, research computing, and data science. We also offer support for proposal development and grants management, graphic design, training, and professional development for participating researchers.

Research Computing and Data Services supports researchers by providing data management, scientific programming, web development, and a wide variety of high-performance computing solutions.

The Genomics and Bioinformatics Resources Core provides the staff and infrastructure for high throughput genomics, genome sequencing, metagenomics, and expert bioinformatics consultation and collaboration.

The Initiative for Bioinformatics and Evolutionary Studies is a research concentration area that emphasizes interdisciplinary research in evolutionary science.



Our Origin Story

The Institute for Interdisciplinary Data Sciences is the institutional legacy of a dedicated group of faculty who forged novel interdisciplinary collaborations and worked for more than two decades to build and maintain cutting-edge genomics and high performance computing research infrastructure. These clusters of infrastructure, formally named the Genomics Resources Core (GRC) and the Computational Resources Core (CRC), were created primarily to support interdisciplinary research in evolutionary science. In 2011, the Institute for Bioinformatics and Evolutionary Studies (IBEST) was established to support this thriving research community and administer the GRC and CRC. In 2019, IBEST merged with the Northwest Knowledge Network (NKN), adding data management, scientific programming, and web development to the portfolio of services within the institute.

While the core group of evolutionary scientists within IBEST were thriving, the demand for genomics, bioinformatics, research computing, and data services across the university increased dramatically. Now, genomics and bioinformatics are fundamental components of biomedical, agricultural, and natural resources research. Similarly, high performance computing and large data sets are now required to answer the toughest questions that define almost every component of the U of I’s land grant mission. The core facilities built and administered by IBEST have become critical university-wide research infrastructure.

In July 2021, we renamed our parent institute the Institute for Interdisciplinary Data Sciences. This name change is intended to better reflect the skills housed within the institute and the research computing, genomics, and bioinformatics resources that are used by researchers throughout the entire university.

While our infrastructure is used by researchers from many different disciplines, we remain fully engaged with the dedicated researchers who had the imagination, foresight, and enthusiasm to put us on this path more than 20 years ago. IBEST remains a thriving interdisciplinary research community and area of concentration within IIDS.



FAQs


What is IIDS?

The Institute for Interdisciplinary Data Sciences (IIDS) is a research institute within the Office of Research and Economic Development (ORED) at the University of Idaho. We empower researchers to fully harness the potential of the data revolution by provisioning and administering critical university research infrastructure related to genomics, bioinformatics, research computing, and data science. IIDS is a vibrant home for interdisciplinary research where participants can access expertise, infrastructure, proposal development support, grants management, training, and professional development activities.

Why was IIDS created?

Over the past two decades, the researchers of IBEST built and maintained cutting-edge genomics and high-performance computing core facilities, which were originally constructed to support their interdisciplinary research in evolutionary science. During this time, the needs of the broader University of Idaho research community have evolved: genomics and bioinformatics are now fundamental components of biomedical, agricultural, and natural resource research; high performance computing and large data sets are now central to answering the toughest questions that define the U of I’s land grant mission; and the core facilities built by IBEST have become critical university-wide research infrastructure. To accommodate this, we have moved the core facilities from under IBEST and organized them within a larger Institute to centrally support researchers across campus.

What does IIDS do?

IIDS facilitates the generation, analysis, and management of big data across the University of Idaho. Our services are divided into three areas. Read more about each below.

What happened to IBEST?

IBEST is still here! Under our re-organized structure, IBEST (Initiative for Bioinformatics and Evolutionary Studies) remains a part of IIDS to provide support for bioinformatics and evolutionary research.

What does this mean for former IBEST-ians?

IBEST remains as a named research concentration within IIDS. We will still run IBEST events that support researchers in evolutionary science. IBEST researchers will still submit proposals through us, receive support, and have grants administered by us. IBEST will remain an affiliation that can be declared on publications. We are committed to remaining fully engaged with the dedicated researchers who had the imagination, foresight, and enthusiasm to put us on this path more than 20 years ago.

Who can use IIDS services?

IIDS services are available for all U of I researchers. We are here to support you through big data management, genomics resources, and - if your research involves bioinformatics or evolution - proposal development and submission. Please contact us with any questions.

What are the benefits of these changes?

There are lots! Some benefits of this reorganization include:

Together, these changes will improve the sustainability of our core facilities, bring our subsidy models in line with competing universities, and provide the best possible competitive advantage to our faculty.

How do I indicate my affiliation with IIDS for proposals?

If you submit a proposal through IIDS, or utilize IIDS infrastructure or resources, you should annotate that affiliation in VERAS. Examples of IIDS infrastructure and resources include sequencing, DNA & RNA high-throughput sample preparation, and statistical analysis in the GBRC, and high performance computing, data management, and web development from RCDS. Click here for instructions on where to check the IIDS affiliation box in VERAS.



Still have questions? Please email us at iids@uidaho.edu.