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Introducing the International Science Reserve

The International Science Reserve (ISR), an initiative of The New York Academy of Science, mobilizes the global scientific community to respond to complex, fast-moving situations, across borders, too big for any one country to handle – such as the next pandemic, a food systems catastrophe, or multiple climate-related weather disasters.

Science in a time of crisis is not “science as usual.” The ISR was informed by the unprecedented global response to the COVID-19 pandemic, resulting in the quick development of COVID-19 vaccines and treatments. This was made possible through the collaboration of academia, industry, governments, non-governmental organizations, and scientists around the world. The ISR seeks to ensure collaborative systems and shared resources, like the ones that were mobilized in response to the pandemic, are assembled and ready before the next complex global crisis strikes.

The New York Academy of Sciences is responsible for establishing the ISR’s scientific network, identifying and securing critical resources, and overseeing the ISR throughout all stages of its work. The Academy works closely with the ISR Executive Board, members, collaborators, and the scientific community. We are generously supported by our partners, IBM, Google, Pfizer, and UL Solutions.

A Growing Global Network

Join the Community

Recognized by Fast Company as a World Changing Idea, the International Science Reserve has rapidly seeded a network of scientists who are poised to respond to the next big crisis. More than ten thousand scientists have joined from across physical, life, earth, and behavioral sciences, from over 100 countries, seeking highly-focused, intensive, international collaboration needed for global solutions.

Practice for What’s Ahead

The International Science Reserve runs online scenario-planning, or readiness exercises, for scientists to explore different ways to apply their existing research to specific crisis situations. By rehearsing what would happen in a real crisis, scientists can work together and build collaboration in advance.

The ISR has partnered with the Center for Advanced Preparedness and Threat Response Simulation (CAPTRS) to build customized digital serious games to help its network prepare for disaster response.  Learn more about how ISR is working with CAPTRS to design serious games for crisis response.  

To celebrate the ISR community, we are pleased to feature a few of our community members. 

Supporting Access to Open Resource

With private and public sector partners, such as IBM, UL Solutions, Google, and Pfizer, and the National Science Foundation, the ISR matches scientists to specialized resources needed during a crisis. This equips experts to respond faster and more effectively with scientific and technical problem-solving. 

Scientists, especially those from across the ISR Community in low-resource countries and contexts, identified the need for more access to and coordination of specialized data resources and institutional partnerships. The ISR pre-positions scientific resources, so that scientists can connect to them quickly across borders, without extensive applications or long waits for approvals.  

These tools, including high-performance computing, remote sensing, geospatial-temporal mapping, and databases, can help scientists address the worst impacts of disaster, including damage to people, communities, and livelihoods from heatwaves, wildfires and flooding.  

ISR Featured Blog Articles