Center for Information Technology

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The Center for Information Technology (CIT) is one of the 27 Institutes and Centers that comprise the National Institutes of Health (NIH), an agency of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), a cabinet-level department of the Executive Branch of the United States Federal Government. Originating in 1954 as a central processing facility in the NIH Office of the Director, the Division of Computer Research and Technology was established in 1964, merging in 1998 with the NIH Office of the CIO and the NIH Office of Research Services Telecommunications Branch to form a new organization, the CIT.

Mission[edit]

CIT's mission is to provide, coordinate, and manage information technology and to advance computational scientific development. CIT supports NIH and other Federal research and management programs with efficient, cost-effective administrative and high-powered scientific computing. In addition to providing bioinformatics support and scientific tools and resources, CIT provides enterprise technological and computational support for the NIH community; services include networking, telecommunications, application development and hosting services, technical support, computer training, IT acquisition, and IT security.

CIT’s activities include the following:

  • engages in collaborative research and provides collaborative support to NIH investigators in the area of computational bioscience;
  • provides efficient, cost-effective information systems and networking services;
  • provides state-of-the-art scientific and administrative computing facilities;
  • identifies new computing technologies with innovative applications to biomedical research;
  • creates, purchases, and distributes software applications;
  • provides NIH staff with computing information, expertise, and training;
  • provides data-processing and high-performance computing facilities, integrated telecommunications data networks, and services to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (DHHS) and other Federal agencies;
  • serves as a data center to HHS and other Federal agencies; and
  • develops, administers, and manages NIH systems and provides consulting services to NIH Institutes and Centers (ICs), in support of administrative and business applications.

History and Organization[edit]

Key highlights of CIT’s organization, accomplishments, and history are listed at the following link: http://www.nih.gov/about/almanac/organization/CIT.htm#events

Past Directors[edit]

Name In Office From To
James King (Acting) N/A N/A
Dr. Eugene Harris (Acting) N/A August 1966
Dr. Arnold W. Pratt August 1966 May 1990
Dr. David Rodbard November 1990 April 1996
William L. Risso (Acting) April 1996 March 1998
Alan S. Graeff March 1998 November 2005
Dr. John F. Jones, Jr. (Acting) November 2005 February 2011
Thomas G. Murphy (Acting) February 2011 October 2011
Andrea T. Norris October 2011 Present

Past NIH CIOs[edit]

Name In Office From To
Alan S. Graeff March 1998 November 2005
Dr. John F. Jones, Jr. (Acting) November 2005 June 2008
Dr. John F. Jones, Jr. (Permanent) June 2008 February 2011
Thomas G. Murphy (Acting) February 2011 October 2011
Andrea T. Norris (Acting) October 2011 August 2012
Andrea T. Norris (Permanent) August 2012 Present

In January 2008, in an effort to foster improved information and IT efficiencies, integration, and oversight, the Office of the Chief Information Officer (OCIO) was established in the NIH Office of the Director. The functions of the CIO, formerly part of NIH Center for Information Technology (CIT), were transferred from CIT to the new OCIO. OCIO develops IT-related strategy, services, and policy to ensure that all NIH IT infrastructure is secure, cost-effective, responsive, and benchmarked against industry standards. CIT functions as the operating arm of the CIO, providing IT expertise for OCIO program activities and providing enterprise IT services and research and administrative support to all of NIH.

CIT consists of an Office of the Director and five major programs: Division of Computational Bioscience (DCB), Division of Customer Support (DCS), Division of Computer System Services (DCSS), Division of Enterprise and Custom Applications (DECA), and Division of Network Systems and Telecommunications (DNST).

The CIT Office of the Director (OD) plans, directs, coordinates, and evaluates the Center's programs, policies, and procedures and provides analysis and guidance in the development of systems for the effective use of IT techniques and equipment in support of NIH programs. The OD includes the Executive Office (EO), which provides CIT administrative and business management services in support of CIT programs. The EO provides oversight of CIT’s administrative policies and procedures; provides financial management, including development and oversight of the CIT budget; advises on human resources planning and management; and performs strategic planning, operational planning, and performance measurement.

Office of the Director (OD)[edit]

  • Director: Andrea T. Norris
  • Deputy Director: Alfred H. Whitley
  • [Acting] Scientific Director: Benes L. Trus, PhD
  • Executive Officer: Stephen Hazen

Division of Computational Bioscience (DCB)[edit]

  • [Acting] Director: Benes L. Trus, PhD
  • [Acting] Deputy Director: Calvin A. Johnson, PhD

DCB is a research and development organization that provides scientific and technical expertise in computational science and engineering to support biomedical research activities at the NIH, including the following:

  • Conducts collaborative research in biomedical instrumentation and rapid prototyping, clinical and laboratory imaging and image management, communication and processing technologies, computational statistics, genomics and proteomics, high-performance computing, high-throughput sequence analysis, human- and animal-based research systems, knowledge-based management systems, mathematical and biophysical modeling, medical and bioinformatics, molecular dynamics of biological macromolecules, molecular modeling, molecular structure determination, portfolio analysis, robotics and process automation, scientific visualization, signal transduction, data acquisition and processing, simulation of complex biological systems, systems biology, and telecollaboration and telehealth systems.
  • Develops complex computational methods and tools for solving biomedical, laboratory, and clinical research problems.

Division of Computer System Services (DCSS)[edit]

  • Director: Adriane R. Burton
  • [Acting] Deputy Director: Adriane R. Burton

DCSS plans, implements, operates, and supports centrally owned or administered computing resources for NIH enterprises use, ensuring interoperability among those resources and between them and other computing facilities owned by customer organizations. Activities include the following:

  • Promotes awareness and efficient and effective use of these computing resources by customer personnel through training, presentations, consultations, and documentation.
  • Investigates new and emerging computing requirements of customer programs. It conducts research and development to identify, evaluate, and adapt new computer architectures and technologies to meet identified customer requirements and to enhance current service offerings.
  • Manages and operates, where appropriate, departmental computing resources for NIH, Office, or Center use.

Division of Customer Support (DCS)[edit]

  • Director: Christopher J. Ohlandt
  • [Acting] Deputy Director: Christopher J. Ohlandt

DCS provides centralized, integrated computer support services to the NIH computing community, including the following:

  • Advocates customer needs to CIT management and represents services and policies to CIT's customers.
  • Plays an active and participatory role in supporting desktop computing to the end-user in the areas of software and hardware, including internet, communications, and access technologies.
  • Coordinates and oversees CIT's Training Program for the benefit of the NIH computing community. The training program is delivered at no charge to the user.
  • Provides central account establishment and management services for access to CIT systems, manages the NIH IT Service Desk, and implements problem tracking systems.

Division of Enterprise and Custom Applications (DECA)[edit]

  • [Acting] Director: Jack Vinner
  • Deputy Director: Jack Vinner

DECA supports the NIH enterprise business process through the development and management of transaction and decision-support environments for administrative and business applications of NIH, such as procurement, budget, accounting, and human resource activities, as well as systems that support extramural and intramural business processes. Activities include the following:

  • Provides complete information systems management services to the NIH, including technical project management, systems analysis, programming, data integration and conversion, quality assurance, testing, and production support.
  • Provides the NIH community with World Wide Web development, support services, and consulting services for applications development.

Division of Network Systems and Telecommunications (DNST)[edit]

  • Director: Renita K. Anderson
  • [Acting] Deputy Director: Renita K. Anderson

DNST directs the engineering, design, implementation, and support of network infrastructure and services for the NIH-wide area network (NIHnet) to facilitate the use of scientific, administrative, and other business applications. Activities include the following:

  • Manages and directs NIH telecommunications systems and technical requirements for the NIH ICs and implements telecommunications programs to meet the needs of the NIH community.
  • Researches, develops, and tests next-generation networking/ telecommunications technologies and develops and supports applications using new network technologies.
  • Provides consulting, guidance and support to the ICs, helping them meet their network requirements.
  • Improves the information infrastructure on networking/telecommunications activities by serving as liaison to the NIH ICs and other HHS components.
  • Serves as a focal point for telecommunications service orders, and develops and disseminates recommended standards, policies, and procedures for the nationwide implementation and management of NIH networking and telecommunications

Notes and references[edit]

See also[edit]

External links[edit]