The U.S. Federal Big Data Initiative, now in its second year, has launched several new activities with the goal of addressing the challenges and opportunities of big data. Federal agencies also are launching programs that use cutting-edge technologies to analyze and extract useful knowledge from big data for the benefit of society. "As we enter the second year of the Big Data Initiative, the Obama administration is encouraging multiple stakeholders, including federal agencies, private industry, academia, state and local government, nonprofits, and foundations to develop and participate in big data initiatives across the country," according to an Office of Science and Technology Policy (OSTP) blog post. "Of particular interest are partnerships designed to advance core big data technologies; harness the power of big data to advance national goals such as economic growth, education, health, and clean energy; use competitions and challenges; and foster regional innovation." The NITRD Big Data Senior Steering Group and OSTP recently held a big data workshop and the Computing Community Consortium is working with OSTP on future events that will include industry, academia, and government in big data initiatives.