Research, no matter the discipline, is one of the most important areas of development. Without it, there would be no chance for the discovery of new materials and processes. Investigations into applications and technologies for lighting have made significant contributions in shaping architectural lighting design as the practice exists today. And yet getting funding and support for research is one of the hardest fought battles.

In order to increase awareness of lighting research efforts and reinforce their connection to real-world practice, the Illuminating Engineering Society (IES) has commissioned the nonprofit Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) and the EPRI Lighting Research Office to conduct a survey and establish an international database of current lighting research initiatives. According to EPRI, the goal of the project is to “define the scope of current lighting research, to identify gaps in lighting research that need to be addressed, to match researchers with funding sources, and to aid in the creation of an international research agenda.” The IES Research Committee will use the database results to develop a long-term strategy for the future of lighting research.

Individuals and organizations are encouraged to take the 20-question survey and register their lighting research projects online at Researchers who have more than one project may access the link as many times as needed to enter information about each of their projects.

The project database collection period will run through Aug. 31, 2009. To encourage participation, which is voluntary, contributors will receive online access to the database once it is completed and will have their projects (with their permission) made available to sources that are looking to invest in research projects. Questions about this initiative and survey access key requests should be addressed to Philip Keebler at the EPRI Lighting Research Office at