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S & T Planning Commission/ Strategies Subgroup

Goal: To formulate university-wide strategies to excel in science and technology research and education.

1. Create a process that can be used as a framework to develop and choose strategic initiatives

The process should be acceptable to our university community and our alumni, be sensitive to differences in the culture characteristic of the various schools and capitalize on similarities. The process should also be efficient enough to allow in the end formulation of 3-5 clear-cut initiatives that will maximize UVa’s competitiveness in the next 10-15 years.

2. Define clearly what we need/want to achieve in the areas of S&T/E

a) increased funding
b) improvement in national rankings
c) increased regional and national visibility

3. Identify our strengths and weaknesses

4. Perform a "gap analysis" comparing Virginia to other selected institution(s)

a) define and select the appropriate institutions
b) obtain necessary materials for comparisons
c) undertake a limited number of site visits

5. Identify areas of excellence (or otherwise critical areas to our mission) where prudent investment will help narrow gaps:

a) Centers of excellence: define mechanisms to foster the growth of programmatic excellence. Identify barriers both organizational (e.g., traditional departmental boundaries) or physical (e.g., insufficient research space) that limit our ability to develop outstanding research programs.

b) Strategic alliances with other institutions. Evaluate our utilization of inter-institutional research mechanisms (i.e., NIH or NSF multi-institutional research centers) and our level of engagement with national laboratories (e.g., Argonne, Fermilab).

6. Improve our funding for S&T/E

a) Understand the Federal funding environment

b) Anticipate the currents of change in Federal funding opportunities: participate in NIH/NSF strategic planning processes and align ourselves with the designs that we have helped formulate

c) understand how our endowment/development process can work more effectively to fund research

7. Align people and resources promptly and efficiently to achieve our goals

a) Consider different organizational models (e.g., centers and institutes versus traditional departmental structures and reorganize if necessary.

b) Identify barriers to rapid responses to new federal programs (e.g., lack of "surge space" for unanticipated opportunities, lack of seed funding to bring projects to a fundable stage).

c) Evaluate the level of university investment in faculty development (e.g., opportunities for mid-career retraining, effective mentoring programs).

8. A cost/benefit analysis and accountability process should accompany initiatives

DocumentsMeetingsCommission MembersPresident's Home PageYour Comments