CERC's Resources

Uniquely-qualified Staff

The CERC team consists of over 40 employees, including faculty researchers from West Virginia University's Department of Statistics and Computer Science, full-time technical staff, and graduate research assistants.

Our faculty and technical staff have experience in designing, developing, testing, and implementing research prototypes; teaching advanced technical courses to academia and industry, in traditional classroom settings and via satellite and the Internet; organizing and presenting tutorials, panels, and papers at professional conferences and workshops; training industrial clients to use collaboration technology and methodologies; and re-engineering organizational practices.

We also have our own administrative and computer support staff to facilitate the financial, administrative, and technical aspects of our operations. This staff is supported by West Virginia University's Office of Sponsored Programs and Office of the Controller in the operation and management of grants, contracts, and other research alliances.

State-of-the-art Facilities

CERC is housed at West Virginia University's Evansdale Campus in a state-of-the-art building specially designed to meet the unique requirements of an applied research center. Our facility includes offices and cubicles, conference rooms, testing and demonstration facilities, satellite up-link equipment, and video production facilities. Additional space is available for expansion.

Advanced Computing Infrastructure

Our computing environment supports a variety of research activities and administrative tasks. Our primary development platforms are Intel-based PCs with Windows NT operating systems as well as Sun SPARC workstations with Solaris operating systems. Our software development languages include Java, C, and C++.

We maintain our own local area network using Ethernet and are connected to the Internet through the West Virginia University network.

Computing Testbed

The CERC Testbed is a heterogeneous computing environment in which our software and methodologies to support collaboration are independently tested, integrated, and evaluated. Our researchers then develop demonstrable models of real-world application systems.

The Testbed facility enables our collaborators to assess the potential of emerging commercial and prototype software and to test improved processes that can be implemented in their organizations. It supports the design and implementation of systems that leverage distributed groupware and integration technologies to meet the specific needs of the organization, using existing and emerging frameworks, tools, and standards whenever possible.

Electronic Classroom

Our technical staff operate an electronic classroom for the professional production and display of distance learning courses, workshops, and news feeds. We maintain a Ku-Band satellite uplink capable of transmitting and receiving broadcasts, and we can also transmit and receive courses via The National Technological University (NTU) -- a satellite-based, graduate degree-granting university with hundreds of industrial and academic member sites.

Ways to Collaborate with CERC

Since CERC was established, we have teamed with the government, academia, and industry on numerous projects. Through several different types of relationships, we work closely with partners to develop and promote effective applications of collaboration technology

We welcome collaboration with other researchers on most of our projects. Some avenues of collaboration include:

Sponsored Research and Development

Our philosophy is that the strongest teams are multi-disciplinary and multi-organizational. We team with other institutions on research projects in prime contractor and subcontractor roles.

Our major sponsors have included the Department of Defense, the National Institutes of Health, NASA, the Centers for Disease Control, 3M Corporation, TRW, Lockheed, and NCI.

Consulting Services

Our faculty and technical staff provide expert consultation in the development and transition of technology prototypes tailored to a customer's needs; computer systems integration for client-server and peer-to-peer architectures; and integrated product and process development.

Visiting Researcher Program

Our visiting research program for faculty, technical staff, and students allows us to cooperate with universities and industry. Through this program, organizations send their researchers to work with our technical staff and faculty and to use our state-of-the-art computing and testbed facilities on a project of mutual interest.

Research Consortia / Working Groups

To foster national and international information exchange, we belong to research consortia and working groups formed to solve specific problems best confronted by a diverse team.

Some of the groups we belong to include the CERES Global Knowledge Network consortium, the Object Management Group, the Software Valley Corporation, and the American Medical Informatics Association.

Annual Workshop Participation

To further our mission of advancing collaboration technologies, we organize an annual, international forum for the state of the art in information technology research. The Workshops on Enabling Technologies: Infrastructure for Collaborative Enterprises (WET ICE), co-sponsored by CERC and the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) Computer Society, feature working groups that address current topics in the field; the workshop proceedings are published by the IEEE Computer Society Press.

Our workshop leaders partner with international program committees comprised of well-known experts in specific aspects of collaboration technology. We have implemented a "mobile" workshop model wherein different institutions host and play an active role in the workshop each year.

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