Information Network Academic Research Center (INARC)

As a sub-awardee of a larger grant awarded to the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, Lada Adamic contributed research to support the development and growth of the Information Network Research Center (INARC). The research center was designed to address research challenges inherent in complex, mobile, self-forming, and rapidly-changing networks such as those utilized on the battlefield by the Army and its soldiers.

The project was funded by the U.S. Army Research Laboratory (ARL) in order to develop new technologies to support information networks in uniquely challenging environments.

Start date: 9/28/2009
End date: 4/10/2012

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The Information Network Academic Research Center (INARC) used a multi-disciplinary approach to address information network challenges in order to build on existing research in communication, information, and social and cognitive research. The research center brought together a team of world-class researchers from several disciplines, with the University of Illinois Urbana-Champiagn as the principal member. Others partners on this project were UC-Santa Barbara, IBM, and CUNY as general members, and the University of Michigan, Carnegie Mellon University, Northwestern University, and Palo Alto Research Center as sub-awardees.

The research focused on how to best support the primary task of a military information network: providing users with reliable and actionable intelligence across the full spectrum of Network Centric Operations (NCO), including humanitarian support, peacekeeping, force protection, and full combat operations.  This unique environment guided the development of the research agenda to focus on building a foundation for scalable, hierarchical, and most importantly, dynamic and resilient information networks while addressing critical issues of connected and interrelated entities that form sophisticated relationships and networks. 

The center’s focus revolved around five key areas: 

  • Integrated modeling and analysis of networks
  • Distributed and real-time data-source integration and information extraction
  • Scalable, human-centric information network systems
  • Knowledge discovery in information networks
  • Designing trusted information networks

Adamic’s contributions to the project applied aspects of her previous research that examined the role social networks play in the transmission of content and findings that suggested information transmission occurs more rapidly when it follows social ties. Her work in relation to the INARC project was further detailed in her publication, Coevolution of Network Structure and Content, in which Adamic documented that network structure can be highly revealing of the diversity and novelty of the information being communicated in online settings.

Grants

ARL Network Science Collaborative Technology Alliance Program: Information Network Academic Research Center (INARC), U.S. Army Research Laboratory: $130,126

 

The U.S. Army Research Laboratory (ARL) of the U.S. Army Research Development and Engineering Command (RDECOM) is the Army's central laboratory. Its diverse assortment of unique facilities and dedicated workforce of government and private sector partners make up the largest source of world-class integrated research and analysis in the Army.

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