Centres and Research Institutes, Policies and Procedures for the Establishment of

Policy Category: 
Research
Approved By: 
Senate
Effective Date: 
February 27. 2004


Centres and research institutes at Lakehead University are established for the purpose of undertaking and facilitating research and scholarly activities in subject areas of specific relevance to the mandate and mission of the University. The University fosters the development of innovative interdisciplinary research and scholarly activities in specialized areas through the establishment of externally funded and supported centres and research institutes. Centres and research institutes should offer Lakehead faculty: 1) additional venues for research and scholarly opportunities and activities across a number of Lakehead programs; 2) serve as a dedicated vehicle for the promotion of basic and applied research; and 3) opportunities for the securing of additional research funds which otherwise might not be available to the University. Centres and Research Institutes may also complement research activities by the promotion of workshops, conferences and continuing education.
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1. Core Values

In addition to reflecting the University's strong commitment to innovation, centres and research institutes should facilitate activities relevant to the University's mission. In the establishment of centres and research institutes special priority will be attached to research and scholarly activities which promise benefits to the region and its people.

2. General Requirements

These requirements apply to all centres and research institutes which use University facilities and/or use the University's name, and/or are funded in part by the University, as well as other centres and research institutes associated with the University. All centres and research institutes are accountable to the University Senate through the Senate Research Committee (SRC). For administrative purposes, all centres and research institutes shall report to the Vice-President (Research).
 
3. Scale of Composition

In order to ensure adequate scope and flexibility in responding to research opportunities, Lakehead University centres and research institutes should have a critical mass of faculty involved as members. Membership should be broadly based to encourage and ensure interdisciplinary participation across a variety of program disciplines. In addition to regular Lakehead faculty, membership in the centre/research institute is specifically encouraged for Research Fellows, Postdoctoral Fellows, Visiting Scholars and Associate Members drawn from faculty at other institutions and from industry. Centres/research institutes would also engage staff and graduate students as opportunity and funding permits.
 
4. Approval of Centres and Research Institutes

All centres and research institutes of Lakehead University must be approved through the authority of University Senate and the Board of Governors.
 
5. Approval Process for the Establishment of New Centres and Research Institutes

Every new centre or research institute to be established after the effective date of this policy will follow the procedure outlined below:

a) A formal, written proposal will be forwarded to the Vice-President (Research) by the relevant Academic Unit or Faculty with the support from the Academic Head (eg. Chair, Director or Dean).

b) Once the Office of Research confirms that the proposal is complete, it will be forwarded to the SRC by the Vice-President Research.

c) Proposals approved by the SRC will be recommended to Senate for consideration;

d) The Vice-President (Research) will be notified of the Senate's decision.

e) Proposals approved by Senate will be forwarded to the Board of Governors for Approval.

 
6. Proposals: Format and Content
 
Proposals may vary in content according to the nature of the centre or research institute being proposed. All proposals, however, must address the following points:
 
6.1 Purpose
 
The purpose of the centre or research institute should be fully explained and include a description of the centre's philosophy, mandate, aims and goals, its nature (research, etc.), and proposed methods for achieving stated goals.
 
6.2 Relevance
 
Proposals must demonstrate how it would support the University's mandate, and
how they will benefit the University, the community and the University's
geographical region, as appropriate. It is incumbent upon the proponents of the
proposal to make a particularly strong case for the establishment of the centre or
research institute if the proposed centre lacks direct relevance to the University's
mandate.
 
6.3 Life Expectancy
 
Proposals should address the question of the life expectancy of the centre or
research institute. If they are set up for a limited period of time, the proposal
should indicate a date of termination. If they are set up for an indefinite period, the
proposal should indicate a date when they will be reviewed and possibly
terminated. The review will be carried out by a committee appointed under the
authority of the Vice-President (Research) with the approval of the Vice-President
(Academic) and Provost.
 
6.4 Budget
 
Detailed and fully justified budgets will accompany all proposals for a University
centre or research institute. In particular, budgets will identify actual and potential
financial resources as well as, how much, if any, internal funding will be requested.
A budget of income and proposed expenditures for the first five years of operation
should accompany the proposal.
 
6.5 Research Plan
 
Proposals should indicate the research plan to be pursued by the centre or
research institute. Specifically, a proposed program of research for the first three
years is to be identified in the planned or projected activities of the centre or
research institute.
 
6.6 Commitments by Lakehead University
 
Proposals must clearly define what short and long term commitments the
University will be making to the centre or research institute, if such commitments
are envisaged. This includes, for example, all infrastructure support including
accounting, auditing services, and secretarial support.
 
6.7 University Facilities
 
Proposals will address the question of use of University facilities, including rentals,
availability of space, required library resources, use of equipment, and the
question of overhead payments to the University.
 
6.8 Membership
 
Proposals will provide details of the criteria and procedures to be used in
establishing the membership of the proposed centre or research institute. If there
are to be different classes of members (Members, Associate Members, Research
Fellows, Postdoctoral Fellows, Visiting Scholars, etc.), details must be provided as
to the process by which appointments will be made to each class. Appointment
procedures must be made clear.
 
6.9 Governance
 
All centres and research institutes at Lakehead University will operate with an
internally appointed management committee and an externally appointed advisory
committee. The management committee will include the Director (ex officio) and
relevant members of the faculty. The management committee will meet on a
quarterly basis. The advisory committee will include the Director (ex officio),
relevant members of the faculty, community partners and will be chaired by the
Vice-President (Research) or his/her designate. The advisory committee shall
meet at least once a year.
 
6.10 Employment Opportunities
 
Proposals should address the question of employment of students, and similar
opportunities for members of the University community.
 
6.11 Personnel
 
Proposals will address the question of personnel, especially the question of hiring
people by the centre or research institute, the relation of such people to the
University (adjunct status, etc.), to whom such people are responsible, and related
matters.
 
6.12 Legal Implications
 
Proposals will address the legal questions implicit in setting up a centre or
research institute - legal liability, insurance, copyright, ownership of intellectual
property, etc. Where the proposal includes a contract with an outside body
(granting agency, another university, or other body), a draft copy of this will
accompany the proposal. No contracts or grants will be accepted on behalf of the
University without vetting through the usual University approval process for
academic research and activities.
 
7. Annual Reports
 
All centres and research institutes, including those established prior to this policy
are required to submit an annual report no later than June 30 each year. The
Director of the Centre or Research Institute will forward the report to the
Vice-President (Research), who will in turn forward the report to the Senate
Research Committee. The Senate Research Committee will in turn report to
Senate. The annual report will contain the following information:
a) The name of the centre or research institute
b) The name of the Director (or such other title as may be appropriate) and a list
of the members of the centre or research institute, arranged by category (see 6.8
above); including the members of the management committee and the external
advisory committee;
c) A brief historical background of the centre or research institute;
d) A general report on activities for the reporting period;
e) The Academic and Research Contributions of members of the centre of
research institute: a list of publications and other scholarly activity for the reporting
period;
f) A financial report outlining expenditures and revenues for the reporting period;
g) A statement of plans for the following academic year.
 
8. Review Procedures
 
New Centres (established after the effective date of this policy)
 
Each Centre and Research Institute shall be authorized initially for a period up to a
maximum of five years. At the end of three years, the operations of the Centre or
Research Institute will be examined by the Senate Research Committee. Notice of
review will be communicated to the Director of the Centre or Institute by the
Vice-President (Research) at least two months prior to the date of the review.
 
The Director of the Centre or Research Institute is required to provide the
Vice-President (Research) with the following information:
a) a progress report which should include a statement describing how the Centre
or Research Institute has achieved or revised the original objectives; a detailed list
of research accomplishments; an updated membership list and a detailed financial
statement;
b) a five-year plan which should identify future research direction and development
strategies;
c) statements from appropriate Department Chair(s), Director(s) and Dean(s)
indicating continued support for the Centre or Research Institute;
d) names of persons who could provide external assessments of the Centre or
Research Institute.
 
The Vice-President (Research) will forward this information to the Senate
Research Committee. The mechanism by which the Senate Research Committee
elects to conduct the review shall be at the discretion of the Committee in
consultation with the Vice-President (Research). It is recognized however that the
review process should involve meetings with the Director and members of the unit,
assessment of activities and achievements and the progress that has been made
towards fostering and promotion of the academic area. In addition it is suggested
that the review process should include solicitation of external assessments and
discussion with faculty members of related departments who are not members of
the Centre or Research Institute.
 
The Senate Research Committee is required to submit a written report to the
Vice-President (Research) within one month of completion of the review. A copy of
the report will be forwarded to the Director of the Centre or Research Institute
who may submit a commentary to the Vice-President (Research). The report of
the review committee and its recommendation will be considered by the President
who will make a recommendation concerning the future of the Centre or Institute to
Senate. The recommendation may be:
 
1. Continuation with review in 5 years;
2. Continuation with review in 1, 2 or 3 years;
3. Termination.
 
In the event of a decision to terminate by Senate, the unit will be disbanded within
six months to permit the orderly termination of its responsibilities; this term will only
exceed one year in exceptional circumstances.
 
Existing Centres (established prior to the effective date of this policy)
 
Centres and Research Institutes established prior to this Policy will be reviewed
within two years of the effective date of this policy. Notice of review will be
communicated to the Director of the Centre or Research Institute by the
Vice-President (Research) at least two months prior to the date of the review.
 
The Director of the Centre or Research Institute is required to provide the
Vice-President (Research) with the following information:
 
a) a progress report which should include a statement describing how the Centre
or Research Institute has achieved or revised the original objectives; a detailed list
of research accomplishments; an updated membership list and a detailed financial
statement;
b) a five-year plan which should identify future research direction and development
strategies;
c) statements from appropriate Department Chair(s), Director(s) and Dean(s)
indicating continued support for the Centre or Research Institute; and
d) names of persons who could provide external assessments of the Centre or
Research Institute.
 
The Vice-President (Research) will establish an Adhoc Committee to review
existing centres and bring recommendations to the Senate Research Committee. It
is recognized however that the review process should involve meetings with the
Director and members of the unit, assessment of activities and achievements and
the progress that has been made towards the fostering and promotion of the
academic area. In addition, it is suggested that the review process should include
solicitation of external assessments and discussion with faculty members of
related departments who are not members of the Centre or Research Institute.
 
The Vice-President (Research) is required to submit a written report to the Senate
Research Committee within one month of completion of the review. A copy of the
report will be forwarded to the Director of the Centre or Research Institute who
may submit a commentary to the Senate Research Committee. The report of the
review committee and its recommendation will be considered by the Senate
Research Committee who will make a recommendation concerning the future of
the Centre or Institute to Senate. The recommendation may be:
 
1. Continuation with review in 5 years;
2. Continuation with review in 1, 2 or 3 years;
3. Termination.
 
In the event of a decision to terminate by Senate, the unit will be disbanded within
six months to permit the orderly termination of its responsibilities; this term will only
exceed one year in exceptional circumstances.
 
Approved by Lakehead University Senate February 27, 2004.