Manoa Faculty Senate Committee on Research (CoR) Meeting
Date and location: Wednesday, January 12, 2005 - POST 601
Time: 3:00 p.m. - 4:20 p.m.
Members in Attendance: Roger Lukas (SEC Committee Liaison), Patricia Lorenzo, Greg Moore, Steven Robinow, Norma J. Stodden, and W. Steven Ward. By invitation: Chris Helm, Senior Adviser to the UH Vice President for Research
The meeting was convened by Committee Chair Steven Ward at 3:10 p.m.
Steven Ward called for more e-mail communication between CoR members as a way to work in between monthly meetings and give a chance to those members who could not attend some of the meetings to participate in the discussions.
1. Classified Research
2. RTRF distribution
3. Any other business
Steven Ward asked Roger Lukas to fill the Committee in on SEC decisions regarding classified research. Roger Lukas reported that SEC appointed an Ad Hoc Committee to look at the issues relating to classified and proprietary policies. Seven members were selected for the task among those Senate Committees that expressed the desire to participate in the drafting of the policy (Committee on Student Affairs did not want to participate). The members selected are Margo Edwards, Ken Kipnis, Torben Nielsen, Jon Osorio, Matt McGranaghan, Bruce Shiramizu, and Jim Tiles. Neal Milner will act as a facilitator, and Tom Schroeder will task the committee. The first meeting is scheduled for Tuesday, January 18, 2005.
Roger Lukas also pointed out that there would be seminars set up with speakers from other places to talk about classified research.
Steven Ward indicated the need to examine RTRF at two levels: the distribution and the use of funds. He passed to the RTRF Sub-Committee members Steven Robinow and Patricia Lorenzo, an e-mail from James Gaines about the current RTRF distribution. In the current arrangement, the UH System retains 25% of the overhead funds generated by Manoa, and passes on 75% to the Manoa Chancellor's Office. The Chancellor's Office keeps 25% of the funds and returns the remaining 50% to the units that generated the RTRF. James Gaines raised the issue of RTRF with CoR because the arrangement applies to last year and this year only.
Steven Ward proposed three things to be done about RTRF: to look at the system distribution, at the distribution from the Chancellor's Office, and to oversee how these funds were spent. He suggested submitting a resolution about RTRF to the Faculty Senate by February. He also indicated that he would like that resolution to be educational.
Since RTRF is generated by the indirect costs charged on extramural contracts and grants, there was a question about the indirect costs rate of UH Manoa. Chris Helm indicated that the current rate for research activities was 36.3%.The plan was to increase it to 40.3% for Manoa Campus and to 50% for the Kakaako Medical School. The Cancer Center would get the Manoa Campus rate, unless relocating to Kakaako. Steven Ward asked Chris Helm to provide CoR with a history of the indirect costs rate over the past 20 years (indirect costs are readjusted every 3 years).
Extensive discussion followed on how RTRF was generated and distributed, how to make recommendations on the distribution and use of the fund, and whether there was a need for an internal auditing system. There was also discussion on how increasing the indirect costs rate would affect direct costs for some awards like the NSF grants, as observed by Steven Robinow. After more discussion on the topic, Roger Lukas pointed out that in general the Manoa Faculty was supportive of a better and improved service and therefore, supportive of an increase in indirect costs rates.
There were various concerns about auditing the expenditures on RTRF. In that vein, the Committee discussed what CoR wanted to accomplish with a resolution on the distribution and use of RTRF and whether the Faculty would like to have a say in how the RTRF was spent at the Chancellor's Office level.
Finally, the Committee decided that the RTRF Sub-Committee put together a proposal that requested a continuation of the current distribution of RTRF, but with a higher investment in research infrastructure. The proposal should also ask for a detailed report on the allocation and expenditures of the portion (1/3) of the RTRF that is retained by the UH System and the Manoa Chancellor's Office; this report should be presented to the Faculty Senate on an annual basis. The Vice President for Research, James Gaines, and the Vice Chancellor for Research, Gary Ostrander, should be approached for this matter.
Norma J. Stodden asked Chris Helm to address the issue of delays in getting MOAs (Memorandum of Agreements) processed by ORS. Chris Helm said he would look into it.
The meeting was adjourned at 4:20 p.m.