Convergence

_______________________________________

Facilitating Transdisciplinary Integration of
Life Sciences, Physical Sciences,
Engineering, and Beyond

Committee on Key Challenge Areas for Convergence and Health
Board on Life Sciences
Division on Earth and Life Studies

NATIONAL RESEARCH COUNCIL
                         OF THE NATIONAL ACADEMIES

THE NATIONAL ACADEMIES PRESS
Washington, D.C.
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Committee on Key Challenge Areas for Convergence and Health Board on Life Sciences Division on Earth and Life Studies

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THE NATIONAL ACADEMIES PRESS  500 Fifth Street, NW  Washington, DC 20001 NOTICE: The project that is the subject of this report was approved by the Gov- erning Board of the National Research Council, whose members are drawn from the councils of the National Academy of Sciences, the National Academy of Engi- neering, and the Institute of Medicine. The members of the committee responsible for the report were chosen for their special competences and with regard for appropriate balance. This project was supported by the Raymond and Beverly Sackler Science Fund of the National Academy of Sciences, the Burroughs Wellcome Fund, the Kavli Foundation, Research Corporation for Science Advancement, the National Science Foundation through grant PHY-1353249, the National Institutes of Health through award HHSN263201200074I/HHSN26300047, TO#47, the William R. Kenan, Jr. Institute for Engineering, Technology & Science of North Carolina State Univer- sity, the Frank Hawkins Kenan Institute of Private Enterprise of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and the Connecticut Institute for Clinical and Translational Science at the University of Connecticut. The views expressed herein are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of the organiza- tions or agencies that provided support for the project. International Standard Book Number-13:  978-0-309-30151-0 International Standard Book Number-10:  0-309-30151-3 Library of Congress Control Number:  20141940815 Additional copies of this report are available for sale from the National Academies Press, 500 Fifth Street, NW, Keck 360, Washington, DC 20001; (800) 624-6242 or (202) 334-3313; http://www.nap.edu. Copyright 2014 by the National Academy of Sciences. All rights reserved. Printed in the United States of America. Suggested citation: NRC (National Research Council). 2014. Convergence: Facilitat- ing Transdisciplinary Integration of Life Sciences, Physical Sciences, Engineering, and Beyond. Washington, DC: The National Academies Press.

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The National Academy of Sciences is a private, nonprofit, self-perpetuating society of distinguished scholars engaged in scientific and engineering research, dedicated to the furtherance of science and technology and to their use for the general welfare. Upon the authority of the charter granted to it by the Congress in 1863, the Academy has a mandate that requires it to advise the federal govern- ment on scientific and technical matters. Dr. Ralph J. Cicerone is president of the National Academy of Sciences. The National Academy of Engineering was established in 1964, under the charter of the National Academy of Sciences, as a parallel organization of outstanding engineers. It is autonomous in its administration and in the selection of its mem- bers, sharing with the National Academy of Sciences the responsibility for advis- ing the federal government. The National Academy of Engineering also sponsors engineering programs aimed at meeting national needs, encourages education and research, and recognizes the superior achievements of engineers. Dr. C. D. Mote, Jr., is president of the National Academy of Engineering. The Institute of Medicine was established in 1970 by the National Academy of Sciences to secure the services of eminent members of appropriate professions in the examination of policy matters pertaining to the health of the public. The Institute acts under the responsibility given to the National Academy of Sciences by its congressional charter to be an adviser to the federal government and, upon its own initiative, to identify issues of medical care, research, and education. Dr. Harvey V. Fineberg is president of the Institute of Medicine. The National Research Council was organized by the National Academy of Sciences in 1916 to associate the broad community of science and technology with the Academy’s purposes of furthering knowledge and advising the federal government. Functioning in accordance with general policies determined by the Academy, the Council has become the principal operating agency of both the National Academy of Sciences and the National Academy of Engineering in pro- viding services to the government, the public, and the scientific and engineering communities. The Council is administered jointly by both Academies and the Institute of Medicine. Dr. Ralph J. Cicerone and Dr. C. D. Mote, Jr., are chair and vice chair, respectively, of the National Research Council. www.national-academies.org

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COMMITTEE ON KEY CHALLENGE AREAS FOR CONVERGENCE AND HEALTH JOSEPH M. DeSIMONE (Chair), University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, North Carolina and North Carolina State University, Raleigh, North Carolina TIMOTHY GALITSKI, Institute for Systems Biology and, recently, EMD Millipore Corporation, Danvers, Massachusetts JAMES M. GENTILE, Hope College, Holland, Michigan SHARON C. GLOTZER, University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, Michigan SUSAN J. HOCKFIELD, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Cambridge, Massachusetts JULIE THOMPSON KLEIN, Wayne State University, Detroit, Michigan CATO T. LAURENCIN, University of Connecticut Health Center, Farmington, Connecticut CHERRY A. MURRAY, Harvard University, Cambridge, Massachusetts MONICA OLVERA DE LA CRUZ, Northwestern University, Evanston, Illinois NICHOLAS A. PEPPAS, University of Texas, Austin, Texas LYNNE J. REGAN, Yale University, New Haven, Connecticut J. DAVID ROESSNER, SRI International, Redwood City, California Staff KATHERINE BOWMAN, Study Director and Senior Program Officer CARL G. ANDERSON, Program Associate LAURENCE YEUNG, Mirzayan Science & Technology Policy Fellow JOSEPH ALPER, Consulting Science Writer v

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BOARD ON LIFE SCIENCES JAMES P. COLLINS (Chair), Arizona State University, Tempe, Arizona ENRIQUETA C. BOND, Burroughs Wellcome Fund, Marshall, Virginia ROGER D. CONE, Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Nashville, Tennessee SEAN EDDY, HHMI Janelia Farm Research Campus, Ashburn, Virginia SARAH C.R. ELGIN, Washington University, St. Louis, Missouri DAVID R. FRANZ, Former CDR USAMRIID, Consultant, Frederick, Maryland LOUIS J. GROSS, University of Tennessee, Knoxville, Tennessee ELIZABETH HEITMAN, Vanderbilt University Medical Center, Nashville, Tennessee JOHN G. HILDEBRAND, The University of Arizona, Tucson, Arizona RICHARD A. JOHNSON, Arnold & Porter, LLC, Washington, D.C. JUDITH KIMBLE, University of Wisconsin, Madison, Wisconsin CATO T. LAURENCIN, University of Connecticut Health Center, Farmington, Connecticut ALAN I. LESHNER, American Association for the Advancement of Science, Washington, D.C. KAREN E. NELSON, J. Craig Venter Institute, Rockville, Maryland ROBERT M. NEREM, Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta, Georgia CAMILLE PARMESAN, University of Texas, Austin, Texas ALISON G. POWER, Cornell University, Ithaca, New York MARGARET RILEY, University of Massachusetts, Amherst, Massachusetts JANIS C. WEEKS, University of Oregon, Eugene, Oregon MARY WOOLLEY, Research!America, Alexandria, Virginia Staff FRANCES E. SHARPLES, Director JO L. HUSBANDS, Scholar/Senior Project Director JAY B. LABOV, Senior Scientist/Program Director for Biology Education KATHERINE W. BOWMAN, Senior Program Officer INDIA HOOK-BARNARD, Senior Program Officer MARILEE K. SHELTON-DAVENPORT, Senior Program Officer KEEGAN SAWYER, Program Officer BETHELHEM M. BANJAW, Financial Associate ANGELA KOLESNIKOVA, Administrative Assistant JENNA OGILVIE, Senior Program Assistant LAUREN SONI, Senior Program Assistant vi

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Preface T he scientific opportunities enabled by convergence—the coming together of insights and approaches from originally distinct fields— will make fundamental contributions in our drive to provide cre- ative solutions to the most difficult problems facing us as a society. This convergence provides power to think beyond usual paradigms and to approach issues informed by many perspectives instead of few. In my own experience, the potential for innovation and successful problem solv- ing becomes greater when we are able to harness the knowledge bases, skill sets, and diversity of experience of individuals in an environment that fosters dialogue and respectful participation by all team members. Ultimately, I believe this will entail partnerships at the intersection not only of the life and medical sciences, physical sciences, computational sciences, and engineering, but also economic, social, and behavioral sci- ences, arts and humanities disciplines, and beyond, thereby amplifying the potential for innovations of incredible variety and magnitude. Those who participate in convergent science are excited by the possi- bilities, but they know how difficult are the challenges to creating and sus- taining environments that facilitate it. The present study was undertaken to better understand these challenges and to explore examples of current convergence programs in order to inform investigators and organiza- tions interested in expanding or establishing their own efforts. Beyond this goal, the approach embodied by convergence provides a framework for thinking about the research enterprise and the network of partners that together form the ecosystem that enables science from innovative vii

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viii PREFACE research to translational application. Convergence provides us with an opportunity not only to discuss strategies to advance science but also to elevate discussions on how to tackle fundamental structural challenges in our research universities, funding systems, policies, and partnerships. I was joined in this project by committee members who enthusiasti- cally brought their creativity and knowledge, informed by multiple areas of expertise, to the study, and it has been a great pleasure to work with each of them. We were also fortunate to have the support of the presidents of the three Academies—the National Academy of Sciences, National Academy of Engineering, and Institute of Medicine—in supporting a role for the National Research Council to address this topic. The committee’s data-gathering workshop likewise drew on the contributions of scientists from graduate students to senior deans, along with agency, foundation, and industry leaders. Their perspectives were critical to the committee’s thinking and I am grateful for their active engagement. Finally, on behalf of the committee, I want to recognize the dedication of the NRC staff, especially study director Katherine Bowman, who worked alongside us to bring the report to fruition. Their guidance, ideas, and support through- out the process were invaluable. Bringing together the insights enabled by rapid progress across mul- tiple disciplines has the potential to transform science for the benefit of society. It is the committee’s hope that the report will bring awareness of this convergence to a wider range of audiences and stakeholders and cata- lyze the systematic efforts necessary to harness its power most effectively. Joseph M. DeSimone, Chair Committee on Key Challenge Areas for Convergence and Health

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Acknowledgments T his report has been reviewed in draft form by individuals chosen for their diverse perspectives and technical expertise, in accordance with procedures approved by the National Academies’ Report Review Committee. The purpose of this independent review is to provide candid and critical comments that will assist the institution in making its published report as sound as possible and to ensure that the report meets institutional standards for objectivity, evidence, and responsiveness to the study charge. The review comments and draft manuscript remain confidential to protect the integrity of the process. We wish to thank the following individuals for their review of this report: Ann M. Arvin, Stanford University Michael M. Crow, Arizona State University Jerry A. Jacobs, University of Pennsylvania Philip M. Neches, Teradata Corporation Jack C. Schultz, University of Missouri Esther S. Takeuchi, Stony Brook University Although the reviewers listed above have provided many construc- tive comments and suggestions, they were not asked to endorse the con- clusions or recommendations, nor did they see the final draft of the report before its release. The review of this report was overseen by William ix

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x ACKNOWLEDGMENTS H. Press, University of Texas and Robert H. Austin, Princeton University. Appointed by the National Academies, they were responsible for making certain that an independent examination of this report was carried out in accordance with institutional procedures and that all review comments were carefully considered. Responsibility for the final content of this report rests entirely with the authoring committee and the institution. The committee also thanks all those who participated in the work- shop “Key Challenges in the Implementation of Convergence,” held Sep- tember 16-17, 2013 (Appendix B).

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Contents SUMMARY 1 1 INTRODUCTION 17 1.1 A Science and Technology Revolution is Occurring, 18 1.2 Convergence is an Expanded Form of Interdisciplinary Research, 20 1.3 Convergent Thinking is Advancing Science, 21 1.4 Institutions Need Guidance to Foster Convergence Effectively, 26 1.5 Organization of the Report, 28 2 CONVERGENCE IN ACTION 31 2.1 A Knowledge Network Will Improve Disease Treatment, 31 2.2 Three Dimensional Printing Will Bring New Healthcare Options, 32 2.3 Convergence Occurs in Federal Agencies: ARPA-E, 35 2.4 Convergence Occurs in Industry: Biotechnology, 36 2.5 Convergence Stimulates the Bio-based Economy, 39 3 CONVERGENCE IS INFORMED BY RESEARCH AREAS WITH BROAD SCOPE 43 3.1 Terminology and Concepts, 43 3.2 Many Factors Affect the Success of Integrative and Collaborative Research, 46 xi

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xii CONTENTS 3.3 Revising STEM Education Will Facilitate Convergence, 53 3.4 Convergence May Contribute to Understanding Quantification and Reproducibility in Life Sciences, 56 3.5  Convergence Extends Beyond the Integration of Life Sciences, Physical Sciences, Medicine, and Engineering, 58 4 FOSTERING CONVERGENCE IN ORGANIZATIONS: CHALLENGES AND STRATEGIES 59 4.1  Convergence is Facilitated by Depth and Breadth of Expertise, 62 4.2 Diverse Perspectives Support Innovation, 64 4.3 Convergence Requires a Culture and Supporting Structures, 64 4.4 Convergence Intersects with Faculty Structures and Reward Systems, 69 4.5 Facilities and Workspaces Can Be Designed for Convergent Research, 77 4.6 New Education and Training Programs Can Be Developed to Foster Convergence, 80 4.7 Convergence Relies on Effective Partnership Arrangements, 84 4.8 Sustainable Funding is Necessary for Convergence Efforts, 87 4.9 The Convergence Ecosystem Includes Core Elements, 90 5 ADVANCING KNOWLEDGE AND SOLVING COMPLEX PROBLEMS THROUGH CONVERGENCE: CONCLUSIONS AND RECOMMENDATIONS 93 5.1 Conclusions and Recommendations, 94 5.2 National Coordination is Needed, 100 REFERENCES 107 APPENDIXES A Committee Member Biographies 115 B Workshop on Key Challenges in the Implementation of Convergence: Agenda and Participants 123

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Boxes, Figures, and Tables BOXES S-1  ngineering the Microbiome to Treat Disease: A Challenge that E Requires Convergence of Expertise and Partnerships, 3 S-2 Statement of Task, 4 1-1 Statement of Task, 28 2-1 Illumina Inc.: An Example of Convergence, 37 3-1 Definitions, 44 4-1 Promotion and Tenure Policies, 75 4-2 The Film Industry: A Model for Rewarding Convergence?, 76 4-3 Seed Funding for Convergence Projects, 87 4-4  onvergence Centers Supported by the Raymond and Beverly C Sackler Foundation, 89 FIGURES 1-1  he continuing integration of life sciences, physical sciences, T medicine, and engineering represents a third revolution in life sciences, building on prior revolutions in molecular biology and genomics, 19 xiii

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xiv BOXES, FIGURES, AND TABLES 1-2  wo representations of the process of integration represented by T convergence, 22 1-3 The role of research in the convergence–divergence process, 25 2-1  uilding a biomedical knowledge network for basic discovery and B medicine, 33 2-2  onceptual model of three dimensional printing for organs and C tissues, 34 2-3  he convergence innovation ecosystem at QB3 involves dynamic T interactions with government, university, and industry partners, 39 2-4  ultiple technology companies are located near MIT and form part M of the ecosystem created and sustained by convergence, 40 3-1  Factors influencing the effectiveness of transdisciplinary science initiatives, 49 4-1  and comb shaped individuals combine depth of expertise in T specific areas with breadth to work across fields, 63 4-2 The web of faculty interactions created by Bio-X, 72 4-3 The effect of path overlap on research collaboration, 79 TABLES S-1  elected Examples of Convergence Institutes that Have Been S Established in the United States, 4 S-2  omparison of Perspectives on Common Challenges Encountered C in Fostering Convergence, 5 S-3 Ideas for Fostering Convergence with a Steady State Budget, 9 S-4 Summary of Recommendations,10 4-1  omparison of Perspectives on Common Challenges Encountered C in Fostering Convergence, 60 4-2 Ideas for Fostering Convergence with a Steady State Budget, 91