Date of Meeting: 

Friday, January 27, 2017

Research Council Meeting

Friday, January 27, 2017

Attendance – Johna Leddy, Jane Nachtman, Jane Paulsen, John Nelson, Faryle Nothwehr, Barbara Eckstein, Carolyn Colvin, Kristan Worthington, Elizabeth Constantine, Jessica Boyle, Robert Kirby, Kevin Kelly, George Hospodarsky

Others – Dan Reed, John Keller, Rich Hichwa, Ann Ricketts, Jennifer Lassner, Michael Weaver

Item 1: Minutes from the December 9th Research Council Meeting

  • Minutes were reviewed and approved

Item 2: OVPR&ED Updates (Dan Reed)

  • The Uncrewed Aerial Systems policy has been released and can be found at http://research.uiowa.edu/researchers/policies-and-compliance/use-drones-or-uncrewed-aerial-systems-uas#policy
  • Christopher Atchison, Director of the State Hygienic Laboratory, has announced his retirement effective June 30, 2017
  • The state legislature is considering a bill that would eliminate research using human fetal tissues. This would affect several UI Research projects that are based on a line of fetal kidney cells that date back to 1970’s. UI is working to educate lawmakers on how these bills will affect research at state institutions
  • Based on recent meetings, the AAU is taking a “wait and see” approach to the new presidential administration
  • The University of Iowa will be hosting a Lincoln Project discussion on the future of higher education on March 9th in Iowa City with a summit in Des Moines on March 10th

Item 3: University Budget Update (Ann Ricketts)

  • The budget situation and its organizational directives remain fluid
  • Central Administration is still working to alleviate the institutional $17 million budget deficit with a long-term vision to align problem solutions with the Strategic Plan

Item 4: Assistant Vice President for Economic Development (Rich Hichwa)

  • The search committee is deciding if it is going to offer the position to one of the candidates. VPR is considering splitting the position back to the original two job descriptions as no candidate had all of the qualities the committee was looking for.

Postdoctoral Salaries (Worthington & Keller)

  • Graduate College Dean, John Keller spoke about the overturned FLSA changes that would have brought postdoctoral salaries up to a minimum level (using the NIH level as a guideline). The injunction, ruled by a federal judge, rolled back the salary increases. 112 University of Iowa postdocs were impacted by this. The Graduate College and postdoctoral council put together a rationale and a proposed policy for bringing the salaries up to $50k by 2018. The proposal is being reviewed by the Office of the President but may be a difficult political battle.

Time Savings Survey (Leddy)

  • Johna Leddy reminded the group about the Rescue Time program
  • The 40-40-20 time allotment for faculty should equal two days per week dedicated to research, but it doesn’t seem that this is being met
    • Leddy challenged the Council to think about what they do that wastes time and how these activities can be streamlined or eliminated. Also, what tools do we use every day and are they necessary?
    • Subcommittee will take suggestions, develop a survey, and send it out to the Research Council prior to deploying it to campus.