DIMACS’s signature activity is its special focus (SF) program. Each SF is a multi-year program of coordinated activities addressing a broad, important topic and comprised of activities including workshops, visitors, and seminars. Open to all interested participants from all over the US and around the world, each special focus emphasizes an area that is poised for rapid advancement, has high potential for scientific, industrial, or societal impact, and is likely to spawn lasting collaborations and research activities. In addition to the special foci, DIMACS is home to a variety of programs and initiatives that are not designated as special foci but also conduct activities that share a common theme.
A more comprehensive list of past DIMACS programs is archived here.
Themed Programs – Running Now
2019 – 2023 Special Focus on Mechanisms & Algorithms to Augment Human Decision Making
2019 – 2023 Special Focus on Lower Bounds in Computational Complexity
2018 – 2023 Special Focus on Bridging Continuous and Discrete Optimization
Themed Programs – Concluded
2015 – 2020 Special Focus on Cryptography
2016 – 2019 Big Data Initiative on Privacy and Security
2013 – 2018 Mathematics of Planet Earth 2013+
2012 – 2017 Special Focus on Information Sharing & Dynamic Data Analysis
2012 – 2017 Special Focus on Energy & Algorithms
2011 – 2017 Special Focus on Cybersecurity
2007 – 2014 Special Focus on Algorithmic Foundations of the Internet
2010 – 2013 Special Focus on Algorithmic Decision Theory
2008 – 2011 Special Focus on Hardness of Approximation
2004 – 2011 Special Focus on Information Processing in Biology
2001 – 2011 Special Focus on Computational & Mathematical Epidemiology
2006 – 2010 Special Focus on Discrete Random Systems
2003 – 2009 Special Focus on Communication Security & Information Privacy
2004 – 2008 Special Focus on Computation & the Socio-Economic Sciences
2001 – 2006 Special Focus on Data Analysis & Mining
2001 – 2005 Special Focus on Computational Information Theory & Coding
2002 – 2005 Special Focus on Computational Geometry & Applications
2000 – 2004 Special Focus on Computational Molecular Biology
2000 – 2003 Special Focus on Mathematics & Foundations of Computer & Information Science
2000 – 2003 Special Focus on Next Generation Networks Technologies & Applications
1999 – 2001 Special Year on Computational Intractability
1998 – 2000 Special Year on Large Scale Discrete Optimization
1996 – 2000 Special Year on Networks
1994 – 2000 Special Year on Mathematical Support for Molecular Biology
1997 – 1999 Special Focus on DNA Computing
1997 – 1999 Special Year on Massive Data Sets
1996 – 1998 Focus on Discrete Probability
1995 – 1996 Special Year on Logic and Algorithms
1993 – 1994 Special Year on Massively Parallel Computing
1992 – 1993 Special Year on Combinatorial Optimization
1991 – 1992 Special Year on Graph Theory and Algorithms
1990 - 1991 Special Year on Complexity Theory of Interactive Computation
1989 - 1990 Special Year on Discrete and Computational Geometry
Other Themed Programs & Initiatives
DATA-INSPIRE: DATA-INSPIRE is a TRIPODS institute led by DIMACS. It brings together mathematicians, statisticians, computer scientists to catalyze a new foundational data-science community focused on the development of intelligent, interactive machines. The institute is premised on the belief that advances in data science principles are needed to impact the emerging paradigm of intelligent machines and their convergence with human society. To realize these advances, a new integration of mathematical, inferential, and algorithmic expertise is required.
CCICADA: With roots as a Department of Homeland Security Center of Excellence, CCICADA is a homeland security center based at DIMACS. It focuses on developing data analytic tools and systems to anticipate and respond to threats to the safety and security of the public. CCICADA conducts research and leads events and activities that emphasize data analytics in homeland security.
Implementation Challenges: Implementation Challenges use experimentation as a companion to theory to gain more holistic perspective on the performance of algorithms. The over-arching purpose of a Challenge is to assess the practical performance of algorithms for a particular problem class, while fostering interactions that transfer ideas between research areas related to algorithms, data structures, implementation, and applications. Each Implementation Challenge culminates in a workshop that brings together the participants in the competition.
Reconnect Workshops: Reconnect workshops expose faculty teaching undergraduates to current research topics that are relevant for classroom presentation. Each summer features a topic that is presented in a week-long series of lectures and related activities led by an expert in the field. Participants engage in research activities and in writing materials that will be useful in the classroom.
Sustainability Initiatives: DIMACS leads or has led a number of activities and events that address topics in sustainability.