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LA-SiGMA will form a highly focused statewide research consortium which capitalizes on intellectual talent, combines the pertinent elements developed under previous RII awards, and leverages the state-of-the-art Cyberinfrastructure (CI) that has recently become available to position Louisiana as a major hub of innovation in computational materials science. LA-SiGMA features comprehensive plans for diversity, education and workforce development, cyberinfrastructure, and external engagement.


We propose to dramatically increase the number of underrepresented minorities (URM) and women in the Alliance at all levels through the following strategies with the goal of doubling each statistic in five years.

Education and Workforce Development

LA-SiGMA will address all levels of the educational ladder, including two-year colleges, through a range of training and educational activities, contributing to a well-trained and diverse professional workforce that can support advanced materials research and industries as well as education.

Cyberinfrastructure (CI)

Strategic fidelity and impact of this project are enhanced by Louisiana's investments over the past two decades in computational, experimental, and intellectual assets that make the jurisdiction well prepared to achieve these objectives. The components that make this plan most compelling and timely for Louisiana are the Louisiana Optical Network Initiative (LONI), the most comprehensive and robust CI among EPSCoR states; leveraging the current RII cybertools project; a confluence of internationally-known materials science researchers; and long-standing and successful experimental facilities for materials research.

External Engagement

We have designed a multi-institutional external engagement program that will provide a well-prepared and competent workforce and educate and engage the public. Through the use of face-to-face meetings and CI tools such as synchronous HD video, our program will provide for efficient collection and dissemination of information between participants, the K-12 community, two-year colleges, and the general public.