R&D Investments

The Commonwealth of Massachusetts has a strong committment to investing in R&D infrastructure, a focus that the MassCyberCenter and its leadership shares.

As the Center's programs develop over the coming years, a focus will be to work with the Cybersecurity Strategy Council and the Ecosystem Leadership Group to grow programs that support cyber infrastructure and productive collaborations across the Commonwealth.

Prior to the creation of the Center, MassTech also made several investments in major R&D infrastructure projects which supports cybersecurity research in the Commonwealth:

  • UMass Amherst Data Science/Cybersecurity Collaborative Research and Education Award: In August 2016, Gov. Baker joined MassTech to announce an award of up to $5 million to support new data science & cybersecurity courses, as well as new applied research with students, part of an overall $20 million project supported in large part by Springfield-based MassMutual. That award has allowed UMass Amherst to expand its hardware offering, a fact highlighted in a piece on Center for Data Science researchers joining IBM's AI Horizons Network.
  • PracticePoint at WPI: MassTech awarded $5 million to Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) which will enable the development of infrastructure to support the launch of a new landmark healthcare research and product development initiative called PracticePoint at WPI, a $17 million research effort launched in collaboration with GE Healthcare Life Sciences, the University of Massachusetts Medical School in Worcester, and MITRE Corporation in Bedford. PracticePoint at WPI will feature four unique testbeds - surgical, clinical, rehabilitative, and home healthcare -- in a single R&D facility which will integrate secure data analytics and equipment to test for cybersecurity vulnerabilities.
  • Mass. Green High-Performance Computing Center (MGHPCC): MGHPCC is a public data center based in Holyoke, MA, that offers "world-class computational infrastructure, indispensible in the increasingly sensor and data-rich environments" of 21st Century research and discovery. The facility was constructed with grants from the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, including a multi-million dollar award from MassTech, and is supported by five major research universities in the Commonwealth: Boston University, Harvard, MIT, Northeastern, and the University of Massachusetts system. In the cybersecurity space, MGHPCC is also partnering with Hanscom Air Force Base and the Mass Open Cloud project to "test methods for secure data management of the combat cloud."

MGHPCC is working with Hanscom Air Force Base and the Air Force Life Cycle Management Center  to study "how cloud computing could safely provide data to users who need it, even in degraded environments, like those encountered by ground troops in combat." - Image courtesy Hanscom Air Force Base; Department of Defense graphic illustration