The three-year, $3 million project called Infrastructure for Privacy-assured CompuTations (ImPACT), will enable researchers to focus on science by supporting analysis of multi-institutional data while satisfying organizational data policies. It will develop a model for managing trust and best practices for multi-institutional networking, data management, security and privacy. ImPACT will use different approaches to data privacy and security that recognize the different data policies and data privacy concerns of organizations, including trusted third parties (TTPs) and emerging technologies such as secure multi-party computation (SMC), homomorphic encryption (HE), and the use of differential privacy.

The system will build on existing data cyberinfrastructure technologies developed to manage, share, and archive data, including:

  • Dataverse, a repository for archiving, publishing and discovering social science research data sets located at the Odum Institute.
  • CyVerse, a web-based platform for handling large-scale data sets and conducting complex analyses launched by the NSF iPlant Collaborative.
  • The Open Resource Control Architecture (ORCA), a control framework developed at Duke. ORCA is used as part of the NSF Global Environment for Network Innovations (GENI) initiative to control the ExoGENI distributed cloud environment managed by a team at RENCI and Duke.

To ensure that the framework addresses security concerns, ImPACT will leverage the work of Silver, an NSF project focused on cloud security issues, and the Indiana University’s Center for Applied Cybersecurity Research (CACR) which will offer guidance on cybersecurity and privacy challenges.

RENCI’s role

RENCI and partners at UNC-Chapel Hill, Duke University, Indianan University and the city of Durham, NC will work together to  lower the barriers that impede researchers from using privacy-restricted data in collaborative settings with a goal to let technology deal with these concerns and allow scientists to concentrate on science.

Project Team

Ilya Baldin (Principal Investigator)

Tom Carsey (Co-PI, Director, Odum Institute for Social Science Research )

Tom Nechyba (Director, Duke Social Science Research Institute)

John Killeen (Director, City of Dyrham Neighborhood Data Works)

Von Welch, (Center for Applied Cybersecurity Research, Indiana University)



UNC-Chapel Hill

Duke University

Indiana University

City of Durham


National Science Foundation


News Release: RENCI to lead $3 million project aimed at enabling safe and secure data sharing