National Center for Research in Advanced Information and Digital Technologies to Be Established

A National Center for Research in Advanced Information and Digital Technologies will be established as part of the Higher Education Opportunity Act (see Sec. 802).

Here's an excerpt from the Digital Promise press release on its home page:

The new program is entitled the "National Center for Research in Advanced Information and Digital Technologies." It is a Congressionally originated 501(c)(3) nonprofit corporation located within the Department of Education. It will have a nine-member independent Board of Directors appointed by the Secretary of Education from nominations by members of Congress. Grants and contracts will be awarded on merit, and policies will be developed following the tested procedures of NSF and NIH. Given its status as a non-profit, independent corporation, the Center will be able to receive grants, contracts, and philanthropic contributions, as well as federal appropriations. . . .

Our next challenge is to secure FY09 appropriations for the Center. Because of the delay in passing the Higher Education Act, it was not possible for appropriations of the, until now, unauthorized National Center to be included in the Labor, HHS or Education funding bills that were passed in Committee in June. It is widely expected that final appropriations for FY09 will not be enacted until early next year. We are working hard to have funding for the National Center included in final appropriations legislation. We are requesting $50 million for FY09.

According to the About Digital Promise page one of the functions of the center will be to "commission pre-competitive research and fund the development of prototypes to . . . Digitize America’s collected memory stored in our nation’s universities, libraries, museums and public television archives to make these materials available anytime and anywhere."