This application describes our plans to continue the successful development of the Institute for Population Research [IPR] at Ohio State University as an interdisciplinary population science center. Defining features of IPR are: (i) Encouragement of the application to population phenomena of theory and models from multiple disciplines, resulting in far richer and more informative conceptualizations;(ii) Active support o innovative research methodologies which derive from rapidly emerging new research technologies;(iii) Favoring of collaborative research which crosses disciplinary boundaries, and research by junior scholars;(iv) Investment of maximum resources in new population science projects and, corresponding, a slim and efficient administrative structure. IPR consists of three research infrastructure cores: Administrative Core;Development Core;Data &Computing Core. The Administrative Core will handle all routine administrative tasks required to maintain IPR's ambitious and diverse program of activities and services. The largest administrative assignment is management of the IPR Seed Grant Program, an activity of the Development Core. The Administrative Core will also handle essential administrative tasks that include maintaining the IPR Database, conducting an annual evaluation of IPR's success in meeting the goals specified in this application, disseminating research findings, and other routine administration. The Development Core is the heart of IPR, as judged by its contribution to achieving the goals specified above and, more concretely, as judged by the allocation of IPR resources. In addition to the large IPR Seed Grant Program, this core will sponsor working groups, the weekly IPR Seminar, and didactic workshops. Jointly with the Administrative Core, it will offer IPR affiliates substantial assistance in constructing and submitting applications for external funding, and it wil ensure that IPR affiliates are compliant with regulations regarding the conduct of research and the public accessibility of research results. The Data &Computing Core is new. This core is designed to assist IPR affiliates in taking full advantage of innovations in data collection, data management, and high-end computing which open new doors for population science. A new staff position Data &Computing Manager will be created. IPR will offer data and computing services to assist affiliates in making best use of new masses of data and new technologies to gain better understanding of population and health outcomes. Our assessment is that IPR can be of maximum added value to OSU population scientists in two respects: first, by providing resources to get new projects off the ground;second, by directing these scientists to opportunities of which they may be unaware and/or assisting them in taking advantage of these opportunities. The first is achieved via the IPR Seed Grant Program and related activities/services. The second will be achieved via the new Data &Computing Core.
The proposed infrastructure award will support services and activities designed to enhance population science research at Ohio State University. This research will lead to better understanding of the determinants of child and adult health, in both the U.S. and outside the U.S. It will also lead to better understanding of the determinants and consequences of changes in family life in the U.S. (marriage, childbearing), and the consequences of immigration to the U.S. Findings from the population science research supported by this award may help guide interventions that aim to address prevalent child and adult health disparities, inform policies designed to allow individuals to achieve their aspiration for family life, and inform policies which make immigration maximally beneficial to all parties.