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Computer Science PhD student wins prestigious award in data science and geoinformatics

August 01, 2022

Computer Science PhD student wins prestigious award in data science and geoinformatics

Computer science doctoral student Amruta Kale was awarded the FUNding Friday Award at the Earth Science Information Partners (ESIP) 2022 Summer Meeting at Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

Amruta is currently in her second year as a Ph.D. student in the Department of Computer Science at the University of Idaho. Working with Professor Xiaogang (Marshall) Ma, Amruta’s work is in the field of artificial intelligence and data science.

For the FUNding Friday competition, she proposed to build and implement use cases of Common Workflow Language, an open-source standard. She targeted on four ideas: collaborate, use case, open science, and test/improve useability of Geoweaver and geoweaver_cwl package, derived from research projects that she and Ma are currently working on at U of I.

Geoweaver is a web-based multi-user workflow management system that allows researchers to build, run, share, track, modify, reproduce, and reuse their AI workflows in a single-machine or distributed environment, and “geoweaver_cwl” translates AI workflows from Geoweaver into Common Workflow Language scripts. With the grant of the FUNding Friday Award, Amruta aims to collaborate with different research communities who can provide concrete use cases to test and improve the framework of Geoweaver and the python package. She aims to make all the data, use cases, and workflows available on GitHub to support open science.

Created by NASA in 1998, ESIP was formed in response to a National Research Council recommendation calling for the involvement of community stakeholders in the development of NASA’s Earth Observing System Data and Information System (EOSDIS) as a critical element of the U.S. Global Change Research Program. Since its inception, ESIP has continually grown and attracted a diverse group of partners, which now includes more than 120+ partner organizations. FUNding Friday is an annual mini-grant competition associated with ESIP’s Summer Meeting. The mini-grants are available to ESIP members ($5000) and to students and Education Committee workshop participants ($3000), with total number of awards specified annually and generally 2-4 awards per participant group.

Besides the mini-grant for research, another part of the FUNding Friday Award for Amruta is a travel grant to present her research outputs at the ESIP 2023 Summer Meeting, which will take place at Burlington, VT in July, 2023.

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The University of Idaho, home of the Vandals, is Idaho’s land-grant, national research university. From its residential campus in Moscow, U of I serves the state of Idaho through educational centers in Boise, Coeur d’Alene and Idaho Falls, nine research and Extension centers, plus Extension offices in 42 counties. Home to nearly 11,000 students statewide, U of I is a leader in student-centered learning and excels at interdisciplinary research, service to businesses and communities, and in advancing diversity, citizenship and global outreach. U of I competes in the Big Sky and Western Athletic conferences. Learn more at


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