Defense Sciences Office (DSO) -- Lagrange

Funding Agency:
Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency

This Broad Agency Announcement (BAA) constitutes a public notice of a competitive funding opportunity as described in Federal Acquisition Regulation (FAR) 6.102(d)(2) and 35.016 as well as 2 CFR § 200.203. Any resultant negotiations and/or awards will follow all laws and regulations applicable to the specific award instrument(s) available under this BAA, e.g., FAR 15.4 for procurement contracts. 

The Defense Sciences Office at the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) is soliciting innovative research proposals to develop novel mathematical methods, on both the theoretical and algorithmic fronts, which will solve high-dimensional, dynamic, data-driven optimization and decision-making problems. Proposed research should fully address challenges that arise from the nonlinear, nonconvex, hybrid (continuous, discrete) nature of underlying modeling and optimization of realistic complex application problems. Specifically excluded is research that offers existing solutions and optimization methods for application areas, however complex or relevant the proposer feels they might be to DoD needs. 

Optimization as a mathematical field is relevant to many application areas such as logistics, planning, engineering design, data analytics, and data-driven systems. In recent years, it has enjoyed significant success in the development of algorithmic tools to numerically solve problems that could not previously be solved analytically. Despite these gains, more research is needed to make optimization methods and algorithms scalable and applicable to the large-scale complex problems that are of interest to DoD and industry. 

Modeling of realistic, large-scale dynamical systems requires theoretical and algorithmic tools to deal with the high-dimensionality and high computational cost, which increases exponentially for optimization and design tasks. Realistic and essential operations need state of the art optimization techniques that could address uncertainties in requirements, needs for dynamic replanning, and real-time decision making with imperfect data. 

To address these challenges, the Lagrange program will develop methodologies that will bridge discrete optimization and continuous optimization. Emerging problems of interest require combining tools from data-driven modeling and optimization, infinite dimensional optimization, algebraic geometry, computational geometry, geometric probability theory, and algorithmic advances combining statistics and optimization. Lagrange aims to develop novel mathematical frameworks and algorithms in the context of a specified realistic application area with the requisite complexity. 


o Abstract Due Date: July 6, 2017, 4:00 p.m.

o Full Proposal Due Date: August 30, 2017, 4:00 p.m. 

Agency Website

Amount Description

DARPA anticipates multiple awards. The level of funding for individual awards made under this BAA will depend on the quality of the proposals received and the availability of funds. Awards will be made to proposers2 whose proposals are determined to be the most advantageous to the Government, all evaluation factors considered. See Section V for further information. 

Funding Type





Engineering and Physical Sciences

External Deadline

August 30, 2017