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Request for Information

Grand Challenges of the 21st Century
DARPA-SN-13-01
October 9, 2012

Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency
675 North Randolph Street
Arlington, VA 22203-2114

using both public and private resources. have a well-defined finish point. domestic and international. inspirational.gov/sites/default/files/microsites/ostp/grandchallenges-speech04122012. scientist and layperson. Grand Challenges as described herein are not necessarily related to potential prize competitions and are not to be confused with the DARPA Grand Challenge.whitehouse. to tackle solving problems of potential societal importance. identifiable goals for the scientific and technical communities. These Grand Challenges can help solve an important societal problem by serving as a “North Star” to provide focus and cohesion among disparate but potentially complementary research and development efforts. DARPA and OSTP seek suggestions for clear.Request for Information (RFI) Grand Challenges of the 21st Century I. Projects such as putting a human on the moon or sequencing the human genome are good examples of Grand Challenges with concrete. A selected set of responses may be featured on the OSTP and DARPA web pages. Submissions are encouraged from a wide variety of diverse perspectives – young and old. Specifically. and are compelling and easy to communicate to a broad set of audiences. as well as the general public. Request for Information DARPA and OSTP request suggestions for Grand Challenges to inspire and motivate the scientific and technical communities. require leap-ahead advances in scientific and technical abilities. II. and the full ramifications may not be known for decades to come. Grand Challenges are not restricted to projects to be undertaken under Government sponsorship. Of particular interest are Grand Challenges that have far-reaching potential societal impact. Grand Challenges that are simply posed. Grand Challenges are defined such that achievement is concrete and measurable. The consequences of these achievements will often affect many different disciplines. or otherwise promoted by OSTP or DARPA. More information on Grand Challenges may be found at http://www. st DARPA-SN-13-01 Grand Challenges of the 21 Century RFI 2 . but will likely be tackled by groups both within and outside the United States. measurable outcomes. Because of the cross-disciplinary nature of the most vexing problems facing the world today. Introduction The Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) and the Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) are seeking to identify Grand Challenges – ambitious yet achievable goals that capture the public’s imagination and that harness innovation and breakthroughs in science and technology. and easy to visualize for a variety of audiences are desired.pdf.

this RFI does not constitute a formal solicitation for proposals. achievable.201(e). foundations. Additional materials may be provided as links or included in the submission in any format (text. and how would success be demonstrated? • What current trends support the feasibility of the goal? What are the likely scientific or technical breakthroughs and milestones required to achieve the goal? • What would your role or your organization’s role be in achieving the Grand Challenge? • What organizations would need to participate in the effort (academic.mil by January 1. national labs. Submission Format Every submission should include the following sections. Submission Instructions All submissions should be emailed as attachments to DARPA-SN-13-01@darpa. video. private sector corporations. In accordance with FAR 15. Federal agencies. Respondents are advised that DARPA is under no obligation to provide feedback to respondents with respect to st DARPA-SN-13-01 Grand Challenges of the 21 Century RFI 3 . Presentation of Idea (1 page) The idea description and rationale may include answers to some or all of the following questions: • What is the audacious. etc. and inspirational goal statement that summarizes the Grand Challenge and how will it capture the public’s imagination? • What success metrics could be tracked to measure progress towards the achieving the Grand Challenge. DARPA will not provide reimbursement for costs incurred in responding to this RFI. Submissions containing proprietary data should have the cover page and each page containing proprietary data marked appropriately. institutes. Submissions should not exceed 35 MB. Disclaimer This RFI is issued solely for information gathering purposes. images.). Additional materials should not exceed 20 pages or 60 seconds of video. Submissions should not exceed 35 MB or the DARPA email system may reject the message as too large. IV. A. V. Cover Page (1 page) • Respondent Name • Organization (if applicable) • Phone number • Email address B.III. responses to this RFI are not offers and cannot be accepted by the Government to form a binding contract. 2013. state and local government. or the general public)? C.

Response to this RFI is strictly voluntary and is not required to propose to any subsequent solicitations on this topic.mil. st DARPA-SN-13-01 Grand Challenges of the 21 Century RFI 4 . and Scientific Engineering and Technical Assistance (SETA) contractors. Federally Funded R&D Centers. VI.any information submitted under this RFI. Submissions may be reviewed by: the Government (DARPA and partners). if any. All personnel with access to the submissions will be covered by a legally-binding non-disclosure agreement. Point of Contact Inquiries should be submitted via email to DARPA-SN-13-01@darpa.