The University of Rochester is committing $50 million, in addition to more than $50 million it has spent in recent years, to expand its work in the burgeoning field of data science, Syracuse.com reports.

University of Rochester President Joel Seligman said the commitment will include the creation of an Institute for Data Science, construction of a 50,000-square-foot building to house it, and as many as 20 new faculty members with expertise in the field.

Seligman made the announcement as part of his opening remarks at the Rochester Big Data Forum 2013, which drew researchers in data science from around the nation.

Robert Clark, senior vice president for research and dean of the Hajim School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, said he expects that the new institute will have an impact on the Rochester region through collaborations with local companies and through new companies emerging.

Big data is a term that describes databases that are so large, they are difficult to process using traditional software. Very often, new kinds of software are needed to process and analyze such massive volumes of data.

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