Extraordinary Opportunities…on the Brink of Discovery.
But what is needed to make that happen?
The XO Files are case studies of basic scientific research opportunities with extraordinary intellectual and social potential, selected by a distinguished editorial board. Visionary long term philanthropic support could unlock that potential and ensure continued U.S. leadership on the frontier of basic science.
Why are the XO Files urgently needed?
- Because of the sheer novelty of the potential breakthroughs
- Because of constrained federal research budgets to explore fundamental science
- Because the proposed research falls between agency mandates
The XO Files is a project of the Science Philanthropy Alliance whose members are dedicated to building a community of supporters to advance and fund basic scientific research.
The XO Files have been published into a booklet. Additional case studies have been assembled by MIT and published as a book, The Future Postponed. Also available at futurepostponed.org.
XO FILE: The Origin of the Universe
Measuring tiny variations in the cosmic microwave background will enable major discoveries about the origin of the universe, including details of its early expansion and of physical phenomena at energies a trillion times greater than those of the largest earthbound accelerators.View File
XO FILE: Unveiling the Viral Ecology of Earth
Viral infections modify and transform the functioning of individual cells. They do this not just for humans, animals, and plants, but also for the microbes that drive the Earth’s carbon cycle. Could this tiniest form of life impact the balance of nature on a global scale?View File Download PDF
XO Files Archives
Frank H. Levinson Chair in Global Forest Science; Director, Forest Global Earth Observatory-Center for Tropical Forest Science, Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute
Director, Institute for Protein Design, University of Washington
Lauren B. Leichtman & Arthur E. Levine Chair in Astrophysics Director, UCLA Galactic Center Group
[Subramanyan Chandrasekhar] Distinguished Service Professor The University of Chicago
Professor, School of Biology Georgia Institute of Technology
Kenneth & Blaire Mossman Professor Department of Microbiology University of Tennessee, Knoxville
Assistant Professor, Department of Microbiology, The Ohio State University
Professor of Biology, MIT Core Member and Chair of the Faculty, Broad Institute Investigator, Howard Hughes Medical Institute Director, Klarman Cell Observatory, Broad Institute
Professor of Physics, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Professor of Geophysics and Co-Director, Lorenz Center Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Professor of Geology, Lorenz Center, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Professor of Atmospheric Science and Co-director, Lorenz Center, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Professor of Oceanography, Lorenz Center, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
Department of Physics, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology, Princeton University
Department of Marine Chemistry and Geochemistry, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution
Department of Biology, San Diego State University
Jay Precourt Professor, Department of Mechanical Engineering, and Director, Precourt Institute for Energy, Stanford University
Leland T. Edwards Professor, Department of Chemical Engineering, and Senior Fellow, Precourt Institute for Energy, Stanford University
Senior Scientist, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution
Director, Center For Marine Robotics, Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution
Professor of Physics, University of California at Santa Barbara
Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Department of Pharmacology University of Washington
Howard Hughes Medical Institute, Department of Pathology and NYU Cancer Institute, New York University School of Medicine
Professor of Environmental Health, Rollins School of Public Health, Emory University
Professor of Medicine, School of Medicine, Emory University
XO Files Editor: Al Hammond, firstname.lastname@example.org
This project has been made possible by a generous grant from the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation.