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National Research Cloud

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Why we need a National Research Cloud

Artificial intelligence requires vast amounts of computing power, data, and expertise to train and deploy the massive machine learning models behind the most advanced research. But access is increasingly out of reach for most colleges and universities. A National Research Cloud (NRC) would provide academic and non-profit researchers with the compute power and government datasets needed for education and research. By democratizing access and equity for all colleges and universities, an NRC has the potential not only to unleash a string of advancements in AI, but to help ensure the U.S. maintains its leadership and competitiveness on the global stage.

Throughout 2020, Stanford HAI led efforts with 22 top computer science universities along with a bipartisan, bicameral group of lawmakers proposing legislation to bring the NRC to fruition. On January 1, 2021, the U.S. Congress authorized the National AI Research Resource Task Force Act as part of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2021. This law requires that a federal task force be established to study and provide an implementation pathway to create world-class computational resources and robust government datasets for researchers across the country in the form of a National Research Cloud. The task force will issue a final report to the President and Congress next year. 

The promise of an NRC is to democratize AI research, education, and innovation, making it accessible to all colleges and universities across the country. Without a National Research Cloud, all but the most elite universities risk losing the ability to conduct meaningful AI research and to adequately educate the next generation of AI researchers.

Learn more about the National Research Cloud

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