Directorate for Engineering
Building Engineered Complex Systems
This program has been archived.
The Directorate for Engineering (ENG) and the Division of Mathematical Sciences (DMS) in the Directorate for Mathematical and Physical Sciences (MPS) at the National Science Foundation (NSF) are collaborating in this solicitation to provide "seed funding" for small teams of innovative engineers and mathematical scientists (mathematicians or statisticians) to seek and develop a theoretical basis of complex systems, with the aim of developing formal methods for the design of engineered complex systems. A complex system is characterized by its display of patterns of structure or behavior at one level of organization of the system that are diagnostic of interactions among parts of the system at other levels; the emergent behaviors or structures are not evident from considering only the system's separate components. This solicitation has been motivated by the observation that many natural, social, and engineered systems have been recognized to be complex systems, in which the traditional reductionist approach to science and engineering fails to predict and explain the patterns and behaviors that emerge from the functioning of these systems. Many engineered systems fall into this category and unexpected failures and other consequences have been experienced as these systems function near the edge of their expected performance capacity, for example in power grids, traffic systems, critical civil infrastructures, materials, chemical industrial systems, manufacturing and service enterprises, and environmental systems. Although these unexpected behaviors can be undesirable, it has also been recognized that complex systems with their ability to display emergent behaviors can be designed to be resilient and robust, features that are desirable in engineered systems.
The proposals submitted in response to this solicitation must meet the requirements delineated in this solicitation.
What Has Been Funded (Recent Awards Made Through This Program, with Abstracts)
Map of Recent Awards Made Through This Program