Collaboration and Sponsors

While we often picture astronomers as lone souls peering through a telescope, building, carrying out, and analyzing an ambitious survey such as DES requires a large, coordinated team.  DES is an international project with over 400 scientists from 25 institutions in 7 countries, who have come together to carry out the survey.  Our team of scientists comprises university faculty and researchers, laboratory and observatory staff scientists, post-doctoral researchers, and graduate and undergraduate students. The support staff are also a critical part of the team: they make it possible for our scientists to travel to Chile to observe for the survey and to travel to conferences and collaboration meetings to discuss the latest results.


The collaborating astronomers of the Dark Energy Survey at a group meeting in la Serena, Chile. (Not a pipe to be seen!)
Some of the scientists of the Dark Energy Survey at a collaboration meeting in la Serena, Chile, in 2009.


Science Working Groups

Our scientific efforts are organized into Science Working Groups, each of which is tasked with coordinating and leading analyses and projects that feed into the larger questions of cosmic acceleration and expansion as well as other science topics. The co-coordinators of the Working Groups make up the Science Committee, which coordinates the analysis across working groups. The Science working groups focus on the study of:

Galaxy Clusters
Galaxy Evolution
Large-Scale Structure
Milky Way
Photometric Redshifts
Strong Gravitational Lensing
Theory & Combined Probes
Weak Gravitational Lensing
Transients and Moving Objects


Joshua Frieman (Fermilab and U. Chicago/KICP) is the Director and Spokesperson of the DES Project (succeeding John Peoples from FNAL). He leads the Project/Collaboration Office, which oversees all aspects of the Project and Collaboration. The Management Committee oversees collaboration affairs and oversees a number of committees:

Publication Board
Membership Committee
Speakers Bureau
Early Career Scientists
Education and Public Outreach
Collaboration Meeting Steering Committee

Executive Committee

The Executive Committee manages all aspects of the operation of the survey, from data management to camera operation to science computing. It focuses on:

Data Management
Observing Systems
DECam Operations
Survey Strategy
Science Analysis Computing
Data Release

External Collaborations

We also collaborate with other scientists and projects to carry out joint studies including the VISTA Hemisphere Survey, the South Pole Telescope Survey, STRIDES, and others.

At each institution, a number of scientists share their knowledge of the cosmos and their perspectives on science with the general public. DES is committed to contributing to both our local communities and the global community.

Collaborating Institutions

The collaborating institutions and their countries or regions are listed below.



Fermilab — The Fermi National Accelerator Laboratory


UIUC / NCSA — The University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign and the National Center for Supercomputing Applications

University of Chicago Logo

Chicago — The University of Chicago

Lawrence Berkeley Laboratory Logo

LBNL — The Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory

National Optical Astronomy Observatory

NOAO — The National Optical Astronomy Observatory

The University of Michigan

Michigan — The University of Michigan

Institute Logo

United Kingdom DES Collaboration

Institute Logo

Spain DES Collaboration

  • IEEC/CSIC — Instituto de Ciencias del Espacio,
  • IFAE — Institut de Fisica d’Altes Energies
  • CIEMAT — Centro de Investigaciones Energeticas, Medioambientales y Tecnologicas

University of Pennsylvania Logo

PennsylvaniaThe University of Pennsylvania

The Ohio State University LogoOSU The Ohio State University

Argonne National Laboratory Logo

ANL — Argonne National Laboratory

 Texas A&M University Logo

TAMUTexas A&M University

Santa Cruz-SLAC-Stanford DES Consortium Logo

Santa Cruz-SLAC-Stanford DES Consortium

  • Santa Cruz – University of California Santa Cruz
  • SLAC – SLAC National Accelerator Laboratory
  • Stanford – Stanford University

OzDES  – Australian Collaborating Institutions


Who is funding this project?

Funding for the DES Project has been provided by the U.S. Department of Energy, the U.S. National Science Foundation, the Ministry of Science and Education of Spain, the Science and Technology Facilities Council of the United Kingdom, the Higher Education Funding Council for England, the National Center for Supercomputing Applications at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, the Kavli Institute of Cosmological Physics at the University of Chicago, Financiadora de Estudos e Projetos, Fundação Carlos Chagas Filho de Amparo à Pesquisa do Estado do Rio de Janeiro, Conselho Nacional de Desenvolvimento Científico e Tecnológico and the Ministério da Ciência e Tecnologia and the Collaborating Institutions in the Dark Energy Survey.


Governing Documents and Collaboration Policies