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Center for Identification Technology Research (CITeR)

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Operating Center Renewal Proposal for the Center for Identification Technology Research (CITeR): An I/UCRC in Biometrics  (West Virginia University Research Corporation)

Research Focus & Anticipated Benefits

The Center for Identification Technology Research is a National Science Foundation (NSF) Industry/University Cooperative Research Center (I/UCRC). Its mission to advance identification technology is focused in the areas of biometric systems and credibility assessment. The center's research will assist industry and government agencies in advancing biometric technology that can greatly enhance national efforts to combat terrorism. The research includes identification processes using iris, fingerprint, and face recognition, as well as large-scale, fully automated systems for applications such as drivers licenses, passports and visas.

West Virginia University, the lead institution, focuses on biometrics and related identification technology and systems, and is the center's liaison with the Federal Bureau of Investigation's Biometric Center of Excellence. The University of Arizona specializes in credibility assessment and is a partner in the Department of Homeland Security's Center for Border Security and Immigration. Clarkson University offers expertise that marries human identification with intelligence and cybersecurity systems.

NSF's I/UCRC program features high-quality, industrially relevant fundamental research, strong industrial support and collaboration in research and education, and direct transfer of research results to U.S. industry, improving its competitive posture in world markets. With industrial and other support totaling 10-15 times the NSF investment, I/UCRCs are a premier example of how to leverage federal funding to synergize the research and development process.

Education & Outreach

An I/UCRC not only contributes to the nation's research infrastructure base; it also enhances the training of the engineering and science workforce through the integration of research and education. The program leverages NSF funding with industry resources to support students performing industry-relevant and interdisciplinary research.


The academic partners in the Center for Identification Technology Research have developed programs for undergraduate and graduate students interested in studying biometrics. West Virginia University created a bachelor degree program in Biometric Systems and a graduate certificate program Biometrics and Information Assurance. Students pursuing masters degrees in Computer Science, Electrical Engineering or Software Engineering can take courses in Biometrics and Information Assurance.  The school also established a Student Society for the Advancement of Biometrics that organizes visits to companies and government labs and publicizes internship opportunities.
The center involves undergraduate students through summer research internships, academic-year research, and senior projects, partnering with industry affiliates to identify projects.

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  • Images from NSF-funded Industry/University Cooperative Research Centers.
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