The grant will be used to expand FIA's "Visiting Future-ist" program, which was launched in 2011 and enables innovators from Google, Twitter, and Microsoft to spend a week on the UMD campus discussing their work and brainstorming with hundreds of students, faculty, and staff. The grant will support three annual events focused on transforming education through the future of information; exploring the uses of crowdsourcing for creativity and human potential; and discussing challenges and opportunities in accessing and using big data to better support government services and improve healthcare information.
In addition, the grant will help establish a seed-grant program that enables multidisciplinary teams of students and professors to collaborate with one of FIA's founding partners. Founding partners include the Library of Congress, the National Archives, the National Geographic Society, the Newseum, and the Smithsonian Institution.
"This generous support will help us to bring more of the world's leading innovators and researchers into important conversations about the future of information, across campus and beyond," said University of Maryland president Wallace Loh. "It will also help our students take part in the search for creative solutions to some of the most pressing issues of our time."