The NGAIA project is focused on the problem of domain-specific access to information in new media formats. Information access, encompassing finding, selecting and using relevant content, is one of the most challenging yet enabling components of our digital economy and contemporary society.
A recent report on the search industry worldwide estimates the total valuation of search technologies at US$780 billion in 2009 (US$242 billion in the United States alone). In a year, approximately 1.6 trillion searches are conducted globally, and yet many of them fail due to the inability of generic search engines to serve specific needs. For this reason, the proportion of searches conducted on generic (horizontal) search engines is dropping relative to the use of domain-specific (vertical) search technologies . NGAIA is addressing this problem directly, by taking a multidisciplinary approach to studying the information tasks and needs within select professional domains and designing systems to suit those needs.
In addition to studying specific domains, the networked structure of GRAND allows us to study the problem of domain-specific information access across domains and develop a generalized framework for the design of such systems.
 McKinsey & Company, (July, 2011). The impact of Internet technologies: Search. Retrieved from http://www.mckinsey.com