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Presidential Blue Ribbon Panel on Research Established

By Jody Record, Campus Journal Editor
December 19, 2007

The search for a new vice president of research has been put on hold until the summer of 2008 while a panel explores the future needs of the university and the optimal organizational structure for the Office for Research.

President Mark Huddleston has melded the Vice President for Research Search Committee and the Research, Scholarship, and Creative Activity Strategic Planning Steering Committee to form the Presidential Blue Ribbon Panel on Research.

Taylor Eighmy will stay on as interim vice president until a new head of research has been found.

Charged with laying the groundwork for next year’s search, the panel will first consider three critical questions:

1) What does UNH need to do now to ensure the vitality of research, scholarship, and creative activity for the next 10 years?

2) What is the right mission and organizational structure for the Office for Research, and, by extension, the right qualifications for a vice president for research?

3) How do we ensure that research activities are integrally connected to and supportive of our broader academic mission?

The answers to these questions will aid the next vice president for research with his or her strategic planning.

Jan Nisbet, director of the Institute On Disability and Amitava Bhattacharjee, Peter Paul Professor, Space Science Center and physics professor, have been selected to co-chair the panel, which will convene with an initial framing retreat early next year. A professional facilitator will be called upon as well as outside experts familiar with academic research administration.

Following the retreat, Nisbet and Bhattacharjee will work with a small task force to undertake further focused analysis and prepare recommendations for timely action, consulting with the broader Blue Ribbon Panel, and others, as they deem necessary.

The work is expected to be completed by the end of April 2008 and the search for the new vice president of research launched during the summer of 2008.


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