RENCI and RTI International expand strategic partnership

CHAPEL HILL, N.C. — RTI International (RTI), a nonprofit research institute, has recently established a strategic partnership with UNC-Chapel Hill’s Renaissance Computing Institute (RENCI) to build upon the success of existing collaborations and jointly seek out new research opportunities in areas such as data modernization, data science, and team science solutions. RTI and RENCI have closely collaborated on multiple large-scale team science projects over the years, including NCATS Data Translator, NHLBI BioData Catalyst, and the NIH HEAL Initiative® Data Stewardship Group.

RTI and RENCI have both committed themselves to collaboratively secure funding in the aforementioned areas by:

  • Creating a joint identity for pursuit of opportunities;
  • Identifying and pursuing additional opportunities to expand on existing work;
  • Cooperating in the exchange of information and networking relevant to potential collaborations; and
  • Collaborating on business processes to streamline and simplify joint business development and project delivery.

“This partnership will allow RTI and RENCI to take full advantage of our well-established collaborative relationship, with a focus on strategically aligning ourselves and our expertise to create a unified identity to pursue future funding,” said Becky Boyles, Founding Director of the Center for Data Modernization Solutions at RTI. “It has become increasingly clear how well our organizations work together and complement each other, and we are looking forward to seeing further success with this partnership.”

Stan Ahalt, Director of RENCI, added, “RTI and RENCI have a synergistic relationship that has only strengthened over the years, and this feels like the right time to use this momentum to intentionally coordinate our efforts and make the biggest impact possible in the field of data science. We have shown time and again that our team science approach produces real results, and we know that our combined impact is greater than what we could achieve individually.”

The partnership will serve to enhance and streamline collaborations between the two organizations by creating standard processes, procedures, and marketing materials to emphasize their collective strengths. Karen Davis, Vice President of RTI’s Research Computing Division (RCD), noted, “RTI and RENCI have a long history of collaboration, and this MOU serves as a formal agreement between the organizations to continue expanding upon this groundwork while also signaling to other organizations the high value we place on team science and encouraging them to do the same.”

Ashok Krishnamurthy, Deputy Director of RENCI, further emphasized RENCI and RTI’s combined potential to make a big impact in stating, “This is a very exciting partnership, and we look forward to innovating together by applying data science to solving biological, environmental, and biomedical problems.”

RTI and RENCI are excited to establish this partnership to combine their individual strengths and resources and expand their collective scientific impact. As evidenced by the success of existing collaborations, this partnership will further facilitate the advancement of team science and scientific discovery in NC and beyond.

About RTI

RTI International is an independent, nonprofit research institute dedicated to improving the human condition. RTI’s vision is to address the world’s most critical problems with science-based solutions in pursuit of a better future.


The Renaissance Computing Institute (RENCI) is a research institute at UNC-Chapel Hill launched in 2004 that serves as a living laboratory fostering data science expertise, advancing software development tools and techniques, developing effective cross-disciplinary and cross-sector engagement strategies, and establishing sustainable business models for software and services.