Innovative Collaboration Formation: The National Academies Keck Futures Initiative

  • Anne Heberger MarinoEmail author
  • Kimberly A. Suda-Blake
  • Kenneth R. Fulton


Founded in 2003 as a 15-year undertaking with generous support from the W. M. Keck Foundation, the National Academies Keck Futures Initiative (NAKFI) occupied a unique space within the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine and in the broader landscape of inter- and transdisciplinary research programs. It was one of a myriad of programs, workshops, models, and activities which aim to expand the boundaries about how we view, support, and conduct interdisciplinary science. The program provided collaborative opportunities to nearly 2000 professionals across a broad range of fields and made conceptual and methodological contributions to how team science is fostered and evaluated. This chapter will describe the key features of the NAKFI conference and seed grants program, how it evolved over time, and demonstrate how adaptation and evaluation contributed to the program’s development. It will also explore the strengths and limitations of this approach and address strategies that have been used to overcome challenges during the program’s 15-year duration. Additional information about each of these topics can be found at


Interdisciplinary research Innovation Team science Collaboration Venture science Seed funding 


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Anne Heberger Marino
    • 1
    Email author
  • Kimberly A. Suda-Blake
    • 1
  • Kenneth R. Fulton
    • 2
  1. 1.The National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and MedicineWashington, DCUSA
  2. 2.National Academy of SciencesWashington, DCUSA

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