Blogs

Volume LV, Number 1 Accessibility in Research Administration Catherine Malcolm Edwards Accessibility Institute, Carleton University, Ottawa, ON, Canada Jessie Gunnell Accessibility Institute, Carleton University, Ottawa, ON, Canada Vicente del Solar Accessibility Institute, Carleton University, Ottawa, ON, Canada David Phipps Research Services, York University, Toronto, ON Canada Jeffrey Edwards The MakeWell Performance Group Inc., Ottawa, ON, Canada Abstract This collaborative and reflective inquiry-based paper critically examines accessibility within the research realm. We focus this inquiry on the principles of equity, diversity ...
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Note from the Editor | "It’s Gonna be May" To start with a pun popularized from boy band *NSYNC, this issue…” it’s gonna be May .” Jokes aside, it really is our May issue, and we have some excellent articles that I’m happy to share with you. This month’s spotlight, the second exploring Hot Topics in Research Law , was written in part by Gemini, the current Google AI, along with SRAI members David King and Michael Slocum. We asked our copy editors to refrain from editing the AI’s text which I think is worth keeping in mind as you read. Don’t miss the second part of Managing Portfolios from Different Ends of the Spectrum , in which we get a chance to work ...
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Spotlight: Hot Topics in Research Law | The Legal Labyrinth: AI in Research and its Unforeseen Challenges This month the Spotlight continues exploring the implications of emerging legal issues when using artificial intelligence (AI) in the research arena. To illustrate this dilemma, an AI-generated article is presented here first, followed by an author-generated piece that offers observations on how AI technology brings challenges and risks. FULL DISCLOSURE: THIS ARTICLE WAS GENERATED BY GEMINI, THE CURRENT GOOGLE AI ENGINE, IN A FEW SECONDS. Artificial intelligence (AI) is rapidly transforming the research landscape. From accelerating drug discovery to ...
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View from the Top | Fostering Collaboration and Growth: The Role of Research Administrators in Building Supportive Environments As Research Administrators, our role is not just about managing research projects. We are the architects of an environment that fosters collaboration, networking, discussion, sharing, and training. These elements are not mere add-ons to our profession, but the very foundation on which innovative research thrives. Our active contribution to the development of this environment is not just critical, but pivotal. Interactions and networking are the lifeblood of any field's progression. As Research Administrators, we are the catalysts ...
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Managing Portfolios from Different Ends of the Spectrum | Part 2: Managing Underfunded Principal Investigators This three-part series delves into best practices for managing principal investigators (PI’s) with either too little or too much contract and grant funding. In Part I we learned the 5-step process to determine the root causes of under- and over-funding . Now let’s apply those skills to some sample underfunded scenarios. Let’s assume we’ve already completed step 1. Realize the problem, and we’re going to grab our magnifying glass and move to step 2. Gathering data. A great place to start is to look at outgoing proposals and success rates. ...
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Research Administration: Early Career and Key Skills to Development There are key skills found in many research administrators, critical to success in the field. These skills centre around a passion for self-development, a desire for process improvement, and teamwork. Passion and Self-Development Passion is important in whatever role we are in. You may not be completely satisfied with the responsibilities of the role, but you can maximize the inherent potential in the role. This could only happen through passion. Passion is fuelled by the impact that you intend to have in the organization. Always ask what will I be remembered for in the role? Another way ...
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Your Questions Answered | Preventing Communication Failures Each month, the Catalyst will feature a question posed to our panel of SRAI Distinguished Faculty members to get their take on all sorts of topics encompassing research administration. Do you have a research administration question for our experts? Send your questions to catalyst@srainternational.org ! This month, we asked our experts: At your organization, how do you prevent egregious failures in communication between PIs and fellow research administrators? What kind of policies or procedures do you have in place? Domenica G. Pappas, CRA, Associate Vice Provost for Research, Office of Research, ...
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VICRA Experience 2024 Attending the Virtual International Convention for Research Administrators (VICRA) conference organized by the Society for Research Administrators International (SRAI) was an enriching experience that provided a deep dive into the evolving landscape of research management and administration. The conference equipped me with fresh perspectives especially in the areas of research, team management (in both research and project management), as well as general career development. As a fervent seeker of insight into the intricate world of research management, I embarked on this journey with anticipation and curiosity. Little did I know that the ...
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My Journey in the Research Administration “Game of Life” | Part 2 At a crossroads in my career, I rolled the dice and entered into a new game of life – the research administration version! Last month I shared how I started playing the game of research administration . Jump back in the car with me as I start to ease the car back on the highway of research administration and take the exit for my next career move – a new university! After many years at my first university, where my car hit the initial and many subsequent laps around the research administration profession, I navigated the car to a rest stop and reviewed the research admin landscape. I rolled ...
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Schooled by Pre-Schoolers Before joining the pre-award team at Virginia Tech, I spent nine years as the office manager for a prek-8 private school in the Blue Ridge Mountains. Because it was a small school, we all pitched in where needed and it wasn’t unusual to find me helping with nap time or out on the playground for recess duty. When COVID temporarily closed the school, I decided to return to my former occupation as a research administrator. I worried about the challenge of going from working with young children back to working with highly-educated and successful adults. I worried for nothing because it turns out that, in many ways, being a research administrator ...
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SRAI in Your Country: Up Close and Personal | Africa Thanks to SRAI’s extensive international scope (over 40 countries around the world), SRAI members literally have the world at their fingertips. Wouldn’t it be great to spend a few days or months, submerged in the life of a fellow research administrator in another part of the world, to walk in their shoes, and to expand your international view of research administration? To whet your appetite, this four-part series will take you on a virtual, imaginary tour of the daily life of an individual research administrator on four different continents or geographic regions – Africa, Australia, Europe, and the Middle ...
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Congratulations to the Recipients of the RMS Certificate! Congratulations to the inaugural recipients of the Research Management Specialist (RMS) Certificate ! Through SRAI’s LevelUP online modules and mGuides, research administrators gain essential knowledge and critical thinking skills needed in pre-award administration, post award finance, and regulatory and financial compliance. RMS certification exemplifies an individual’s mastery of these research administration and management fundamentals. Please join us in celebrating the following Research Management Specialist Certificate earners: Rana Banton Caroline Dietz Megan Elmendorf Stephanie Ferguson ...
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Volume LV, Number 1 A Method for Creating NIH Data Training Tables with REDCap and NIH xTRACT John E. Kerrigan, Ph.D. School of Graduate Studies – Biomedical Health Sciences Robert Wood Johnson Medical School Rutgers University Sally Lu Ernest Mario School of Pharmacy Rutgers University Abstract A major pre-award administrative challenge research universities face is turnaround time for generation of high-quality NIH Data Training Tables for NIH training grants (e.g., T32, K12, TL1, KL2, R25s) which are required for training grant submission proposals to the National Institutes of Health (NIH). Universities with dedicated training grant submission ...
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Volume LV, Number 1 Researching Multi-Disciplinary Diversities and Optimizing Their Inherent Strengths and Opportunities: The Role Played by UNILAG Research Management Office Okonji, Emeka Patrick (Ph.D.) 1,2 1. Research Management Office, University of Lagos, Nigeria 2. West African Regional Research & Training Centre for Low Vision Rehabilitation, University of Lagos, Nigeria Gbadamosi Morufu (M.Sc) 1 1. Research Management Office, University of Lagos, Nigeria Amuda Mohammed Hakeem Olawale (Ph.D.) 1,3 1.Research Management Office, University of Lagos, Nigeria 3. UNILAG Centre for Information and Technology System Abstract The University ...
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Note from the Editor | April Showers Every spring we take the weather in stride knowing that the payoff will be glorious. The old adage April showers bring May flowers runs through my head during every spring rainstorm. We also apply it to other more proverbial storms, where we put in the work and hope to see the fruits of our labor. This month, whether your skies are rainy or blue, here is a preview of articles that might interest you. Spring into the season with Gloria Green’s View from the Top talking about committing to professional development . Warm up with this the start of quarter’s Spotlight series: Hot Topics in Research Law. The opening article ...
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Spotlight: Hot Topics in Research Law | Safeguarding Science: The False Claims Act and Research Integrity Over the next three months the Spotlight will delve into prevailing topics in research law. Legal matters associated with sponsored research encompass a broad array of issues including compliance, misconduct, integrity, confidentiality, ethics, and conflict of interest practiced in multiple settings. This month, the False Claims Act is discussed as a tool to identify and litigate charges of potentially fraudulent activity and misrepresentation when using federal funds in scientific research. The upcoming months will examine the legal implications of using ...
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View from the Top | Spring into Renewal: Commit to Professional Development Embrace the season of growth and renewal by revitalizing your commitment to professional development. It's time to bloom with fresh skills, knowledge, and opportunities. Start your journey toward career growth and success today! Spring is not just a season of blooming flowers and warmer weather; it symbolizes renewal and rejuvenation. Similarly, spring is a powerful metaphor for refreshing one's commitment to growth and advancement in professional development. Just as nature sheds its winter coat and embarks on a growth journey, professionals are encouraged to shed complacency and ...
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Managing Portfolios from Different Ends of the Spectrum | Part 1: Steps to Determine the Root Causes of Underfunding/Overfunding This three-part series delves into best practices for managing principal investigators (PIs) with either too little or too much contract and grant funding. The first part of the series introduces you to the steps to address both types of issues. Both scenarios are challenging for different reasons, but in both cases, it is important to first understand the why of the situation. A good solution requires a good understanding of the problem. To do this, I recommend Root Cause Analysis. This 5-step process asks you to: 1. Realize ...
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From Idea to Reality: Introducing an Internal Conference for Research Administrators Introducing internal professional development at your institution can be an exciting and overwhelming task. In 2023, Oklahoma State University (OSU) focused on building up professional development for research administrators internally. One way to accomplish this goal was to introduce an internal free-of-charge one-day conference hosted by OSU’s central administration. The conference included speakers from the Stillwater campus talking about various topics such as data management plans, faculty perceptions of grants, customer service, information security, artificial intelligence, ...
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Post COVID, Surviving With and Without Department Administrators If you are a central office administrator your challenge is to create a shared environment that promotes cooperation. Every interaction with college or department or external institution may vary. Where would our researchers be without a support team? In today’s world, leaders within large institutions advocate for the resources and implement processes needed to support the growth of the research enterprise. On the other hand, small institutions and non-profit organizations often operate on limited resources and lack the funding to hire research administration professionals. When collaborating ...
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