Minutes - Mar 24, 2005

Date of Meeting: 

Thursday, March 24, 2005


Frank Abboud, Joe Cannon, Michael Chibnik, Ben Darbro, Bill Decker, Jim Giblin, Johna Leddy, Michael Mackey, Teresa Mangum Cheryl Reardon, Jay Semel, Alan Sener, Mark Sidel, Michael Wichman, David Wynes


Michael Hogan, Grainne Martin

Sidel welcomed Provost Hogan to the Research Council. 

Observations about research

Hogan opened the conversation with Research Council by making a few observations about research. 

The University of Iowa is a comprehensive research university, which distinguishes this university from others.  This must continue to be a focus if we are to remain competitive.

Two pressing areas facing the university are:

  1. faculty salaries.
  2. research support for faculty (how to sustain the research enterprise with the federal budgets decreasing (NIH, NEH). 

The Office of the Provost is planning a collegiate-wide reallocation process to begin next fiscal year (internal reallocation of ~2%).  The goal of the reallocation process would be to enhance and sustain the best programs at the University of Iowa.  This is dependent on the university receiving significant funds from the State through the transformation plan.  

In future years, great public universities will need to establish priorities and make difficult decisions, due to declining public funding. 


Hogan also addressed questions/concerns Council members have, including:

  • Is it realistic for the new strategic plan to aspire to the University of Iowa being a top 10 public university?
  • Specific examples of types of initiatives that would likely receive reallocation funds.
  • What are the challenges of interdisciplinary research?  How can the Provost's Office work with departments to help change the culture and embrace interdisciplinary research? (P & T process and budget, review standards). 
  • His expectations for collegiate deans to establish priorities that will strengthen their units.
  • What he sees as the plan for setting expectations and holding deans accountable for goals. 
  • Ways in which we should reallocate resources to enhance and support the research enterprise.  Should discretionary funds be linked to allocations in relationship to Provost Office initiatives?
  • His thoughts on how to encourage more support for faculty at the University of Iowa Research Foundation. 

Draft Policy dated 2-18-05 

Wynes and Martin continued discussion of the most recent draft of the policy dated 2-18-05.  Wynes highlighted changes in this draft. 

Elements addressed by this revised draft policy include:

  • a definition of "research" and "proprietary" material.
  • recognition of specific academic reasons for publication delays and/or reviews.
  • a revised process for review of miscellaneous publication delays or restrictions.
  • recognition of the distinction between research and fee-for-service activities.
  • clarification of "secret research".
  • recognition of recent laws and regulations affecting participation of faculty, staff and students based on citizenship status.
  • other laws and regulations governing access to materials and data based on national security concerns.
  • an updated process for accessing research information which recognizes the transition of records from paper to electronic format. 

One suggestion from Leddy and Mangum would be to create a consistent form that would help faculty distinguish fee-for-service agreements from basic research. 

The group agreed that under the new policies faculty requesting waivers of policies relating to publication and access issues should be required to indicate the specific reasons in the rules for that request.

The next Research Council meeting is scheduled for April 5th at 10:00 AM.  Sidel also announced that the April 28th (10:00 to 11:30) meeting would be cancelled. 

The meeting adjourned at 10:30 AM.