October 2, 2014


November 8, 2019

DREAM Challenges Announces Changes in its Leadership that Support a Rich Future in Open Benchmarking


SEATTLE – DREAM Challenges has announced changes to its governance and leadership to reflect its vision for future growth. DREAM is a volunteer organization of more than 30,000 solvers focused on crowd-sourced challenges to benchmark informatic algorithms in biomedicine. The peer-based governance process has been formalized by charter and will be led by a volunteer board of directors, with a rotating chair position. Dr. Justin Guinney, VP of Computational Oncology at Sage Bionetworks, is the new chair.

Sage Bionetworks has partnered with DREAM since 2013, providing the technology platform, governance protocols, and data science expertise that underpin DREAM Challenges. The DREAM methodology has already been adopted by other groups that host challenges. By assuming a key role in the charter, Sage is making a clear commitment to upholding and growing DREAM’s mission to enable collaborative science.

DREAM was founded in 2006 by Dr. Gustavo Stolovitzky, who announced this week at the 14th DREAM Challenges Conference in New York that he would be stepping back from actively leading the organization, though he will remain involved. Dr. Stolovitzky, the Director of the IBM Translational Systems Biology and Nanobiotechnology Program at IBM’s Thomas J. Watson Research Center, will continue to support the mission of DREAM as Chair Emeritus and DREAM Board Director.

“I’m proud of the community we’ve created with the DREAM Challenges,” said Dr. Stolovitzky. “Our approach has confirmed that data sharing and collaborative science is a powerful methodology not only for scientific research but also for the rigorous evaluation of algorithmic performance that is necessary for reproducible science. There is much to discover yet and it will be a pleasure to watch DREAM evolve under Justin Guinney’s creative leadership.”

Dr. Guinney, who has served on the DREAM board since in 2013, will work closely with Dr. Stolovitzky and the board to develop a vision for how to extend the reach of DREAM Challenges to untapped domains that are poised to benefit from crowd-sourced solutions. Dr. Guinney’s contributions to DREAM have focused on advanced predictive modeling in diagnostic mammography screening and drug combination therapy; prognostic modeling in breast and prostate cancer and multiple myeloma; and, recently, a benchmarking challenge using electronic healthcare records.

“The power of DREAM is the power to connect,” said Dr. Guinney, whose work at Sage Bionetworks focuses on integrative data analysis for prognostic and predictive modeling of cancer outcomes and response to therapy. “Building on the foundation of our past successes, DREAM will continue to serve its mission of connecting individuals and teams with data and algorithms to tackle complex biomedical questions.”

Under Dr. Stolovitzky’s leadership, DREAM evolved into a model of how to use crowdsourcing and open science in biomedicine, with first-of-its-kind Challenges that led to scientific insights in a wide range of research topics including biological network inference, cancer genomics and pharmacogenomics, predicting disease progression, and medical imaging among others. DREAM has launched more than 60 challenges that have engaged and touched the careers of thousands of scientists from dozens of institutions across the public and private sectors around the world.

“Having been involved with DREAM all these years, it’s an honor to help usher in the next generation of Challenges,” said Dr. Guinney.

In addition to Drs. Guinney and Stolovitzky, other board directors include: Dr. Laura Heiser, Oregon Health Sciences University; Dr. Paul Boutros, University of California, Los Angeles; Dr. James Costello, University of Colorado; Dr. Pablo Meyer, IBM; and Dr. Julio Saez-Rodriguez, Heidelberg University. More information about the DREAM leadership and governance can be found at www.dreamchallenges/people.


DREAM (Dialogue on Reverse Engineering and Assessment Methods) Challenges emerged in 2006 to leverage the wisdom of the multidisciplinary scientific community to solve fundamental and difficult questions in biomedical research. DREAM’s methodology is based on crowd-sourcing scientific Challenges, fostering open and collaborative research, and promoting data sharing. In 2013, DREAM partnered with Sage Bionetworks, which developed and administers the technology platform that underpins DREAM Challenges.


Sage Bionetworks is a nonprofit biomedical research and technology development organization that was founded in Seattle in 2009. Our focus is to develop and apply open practices to data-driven research for the advancement of human health. Our interdisciplinary team of scientists and engineers work together to provide researchers access to technology tools and scientific approaches to share data, benchmark methods, and explore collective insights, all backed by Sage’s gold-standard governance protocols and commitment to user-centered design. Sage is a 501c3 and is supported through a portfolio of competitive research grants, commercial partnerships, and philanthropic contributions.

Contact: Hsiao-Ching Chou

May 30, 2019

Idea Competition Winner Announced for the CTSA Program

The CD2H Idea Competition for the CTSA Program is pleased to announce the winner of the Idea Challenge Competition: University of Alabama, Birmingham “Automated Scoring of Radiographic Damage in Rheumatoid Arthritis” (PI S. Louis Bridges). This will be developed into an upcoming DREAM Challenge. (read more)

February 26, 2019

PrecisionFDA and NCI CPTAC Announce the Best Performers in Multi-omics Sample Mislabeling Big Data Challenge

PrecisionFDA and the National Cancer Institute’s (NCI) Clinical Proteomic Tumor Analysis Consortium (CPTAC) (in coordination with DREAM Challenges) are pleased to announce the Best Performers in the first-ever Crowdsourced Multi-omics Sample Mislabeling Big Data Challenge. This unique challenge utilized proteogenomic datasets generated by CPTAC and clinical annotation information. A total of 230 submissions from participants around the globe were received and evaluated. Subchallenge 1 focused on the development of next-gen computational models for detecting mislabeled samples using proteomic and clinical data generated by CPTAC, while Subchallenge 2 took a step further, aiming to identify and correct mismatched samples with one data type mislabeled among three data types (clinical, transcriptomic, and proteomic data). Visit us to learn more about this big data computational multi-omics challenge and its best performers and come here them their findings at  DREAM Challenges@RECOMB 2019. (learn more)

January 31, 2019

Announcing Agenda for DREAM Challenges@RECOMB 2019

Join us at this years DREAM Challenges@RECOMB workshop on May 4, 2019 in Washington, DC at George Washington University.  This years’ workshop has two main objectives. The first objective is to present the final results of two recent Challenges: the FDA/NCI-CPTAC Multi-omics Enabled Sample Mislabeling Correction Challenge and the ICGC-TCGA DREAM Somatic Mutation Calling – RNA Fusion Detection Challenge. The second objective is to foster an in-depth dialogue between various big-data initiatives being carried out by different agencies in the US Federal Government (such as NCI and NASA) and the scientific community, to explore the role that crowd-sourced Challenges can play in increasing the creative use of data in big-data projects. For this we have invited administrators and scientists leading big data projects to present talks focusing on what these initiatives are doing programmatically and scientifically. This will be followed by a panel discussing how each of these initiatives could benefit by crowd-sourcing their data through scientific challenges. After the panel we will break into groups and work on potential challenges of relevance to these programs. The day should provide an incentive for large-scale data initiatives to leverage crowdsourced challenges as a strategy for enhanced data use by the community and an overview on the process of challenge organization from inception to results. (Learn more)

July 30, 2018

Call for Papers for DREAM Conference in December 2018!

This year we are inviting posters and oral presentations about past DREAM Challenges. We encourage participants to submit abstracts about their published or unpublished work on DREAM Challenges, such as the SMC Challenges, ENCODE challenge, the AZ synergy Challenge, etc. Abstracts may be either original unpublished work related to challenges or work that was published or accepted for publication in a journal previously. (Submit here)

March 19, 2018

Register NOW for DREAM Challenges and EPIDEMIUM@RECOMB in Paris 2018

Registration is open for DREAM Challenges and EPIDEMIUM@RECOMB April 19-20.   The meeting will focus on proteogenomics, single cell systems biology and cancer epidemiology, and how crowdsourced science, data sharing and a culture of collaboration can help advance research in these fields. We will highlight the solutions of the top performing strategies in the Epidemium program in cancer epidemiology and the recent NCI-CPTAC Proteogenomics DREAM Challenge. We will also brainstorm as a community on the possibility of organizing a DREAM challenge on Single Cell Systems Biology, and have a RAMP Challenge Hands on Session.  The RAMP challenge will be divided into an initial individual phase followed by a collaborative phase of discussion. Solutions will be shown instantly in a leaderboard. Ensemble predictions will also be performed during the RAMP workshop.  Pre-Sign up for RAMP Session.  (30 participants needed to preregister to reserve the session.)  (Learn more)

January 17, 2018

Winners in the DREAM Parkinson’s Disease Digital Biomarker Challenge Announced

Sage Bionetworks in Collaboration with The Michael J. Fox Foundation Announce Winners in the DREAM Parkinson’s Disease Digital Biomarker Challenge. Sage Bionetworks announced today the results of the Parkinson’s Disease Digital Biomarker (PDDM) DREAM challenge, an open crowd-sourced research project designed to benchmark the use of remote sensors to diagnose and track Parkinson’s disease (PD). The winners of this Challenge developed methods that are 38% better than previous models at detecting Parkinson’s disease from a simple walk and balance test (read more)

November 13, 2017

New DREAM Video

Calling all DREAMers…  The DREAM team is developing a video project about DREAM and our community, and needs your help.  We need Selfies of you holding signs that say either  “DREAM Challenges”  or “DREAM” or “Wisdom of the Crowd” .  Take a sheet of white unlined copier paper and write as big as you can with a marker (so it is legible).  You can take one selfie with one message or three.   Then we will include them in the video of our community of DREAMers adding to the Wisdom of the Crowd.  (12/6/17 – Thanks for your help.. this is done.. Please see video on the DREAM home page or on Youtube – https://youtu.be/PrAA-DnTQ7w)