Beating The News With Early Indicators

Many societal events are preceded by changes in communication, consumption, and movement. Some of these changes may be indirectly observable from publicly available sources, such as web search trends, blogs, microblogs, internet traffic, webcams, financial markets, and many others.

Published research has found that many of these data sources are individually useful in the early detection of events such as disease outbreaks and macroeconomic trends. However, little research has examined the value of combinations of data from diverse sources.

The OSI Program seeks to develop methods for continuous, automated analysis of publicly available data in order to anticipate and/or detect societal disruptions, such as political crises, disease outbreaks, economic instability, resource shortages, and natural disasters. The Program will aim to develop methods that “beat the news” by fusing early indicators of events from multiple data sources and types.

The Intelligence Advanced Research Projects Activity (IARPA) will host a Proposers’ Day Conference for the Open Source Indicators (OSI) Program on August 3, 2011, in anticipation of the release of a new solicitation in support of the program. The Conference will be held from 8:30 AM to 4:00 PM in the Washington, DC metropolitan area.

The purpose of the conference will be to provide introductory information on OSI and the research problems that the program aims to address, to respond to questions from potential proposers, and to provide a forum for potential proposers to present their capabilities and find potential team partners.

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