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NEWS RELEASE

05-23-02

Contacts:
James Bloedel, Vice Provost for Research and Advanced Studies,
(515) 294-6344
Kirk Wolter, IRISS, (515) 294-5189
Steve Sullivan, News Service, (515) 294-3720



ISU ESTABLISHES SURVEY SCIENCE INSTITUTE

AMES, Iowa -- Iowa State University is creating a new institute that will collect and analyze data about people, households, businesses, the environment and other institutions.

The Interdisciplinary Research Institute for Survey Science (IRISS) will bring together existing several ISU centers to conduct research and outreach activities. The institute was approved by the Board of Regents, State of Iowa, in May.

"Twenty-first century America finds itself in the age of information. Governments, businesses, non-profit organizations, and individuals have a tremendous appetite for data and use data to make critical decisions everyday," said James Bloedel, vice provost for research and advanced studies. "Through this new institute, Iowa State University is positioned to be a major player on the national, and even international, stage in the collection, analysis, and use of information for research and decision-making."

IRISS will include the Institute for Social and Behavioral Research (ISBR), Research Institute for Studies in Education (RISE) and the Survey Section of the Statistical Laboratory.

"Because of synergies and scale, IRISS will be stronger that the sum of its parts and that strength will translate into a prominent position in the market for survey research," said Kirk Wolter, professor of statistics and founding director of IRISS.

The new institute will conduct research in such areas as agriculture and rural population trends. It will also conduct research, training, and state and federal program evaluation. The institute will compete for contracts and grants offered by a variety of organizations, including federal, state, and local governments, foundations, and commercial enterprises.

ISU faculty, graduate students, and possibly some undergraduates, will conduct the institute's work. The institute will also offer outreach programs to professionals in Iowa, the U.S., and abroad.

As a university-wide institute, IRISS will be part of the office of the vice provost for research and advanced studies. IRISS will work closely with the Colleges of Agriculture, Education, Family and Consumer Sciences, and Liberal Arts and Sciences.



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