Research Centres and Institutes

Date

April 3, 2002

Revision Date

January 28, 2010

Number

R 40.01

Revision No.

A

1. Purpose

The purpose of this policy is to define Research Centres and Research Institutes, the intended scope of their activities, and their required governance and reporting structures.

2. Definitions

Research Centres are non-departmental academic or administrative units established for the purposes of facilitating collaborative research mainly within a Faculty.

Research Institutes are created to facilitate collaborative multi-disciplinary research between different Faculties and/or multi-university initiatives and to provide research-related services to the community.

SCUP is the Senate Committee on University Priorities, the academic body responsible for overseeing Research Centres and Institutes on behalf of Senate.

3. Policy

3.1 The purposes of Research Centres and Research Institutes encompass, but are not limited to facilitating collaborative research, especially multi-disciplinary research, and facilitating multi-university initiatives.

3.2 Each Research Centre and Research Institute is subject to all applicable University policies.

3.3 A Research Centre or a Research Institute is entitled to identify itself as a part of Simon Fraser University and to use the University's name and address in the conduct of its activities.

3.4 These rights are granted at the discretion of Senate for fixed, renewable terms.

3.5 Governance and Reporting

3.5.1 The Director of a Research Centre reports to a Faculty Dean, who is responsible for overseeing its governance and budgetary accounts. A list of all Research Centres under the authority of a Dean appears in Appendix I.

3.5.2 The responsible Dean, acting in consultation as appropriate with other university administrators, shall review each Research Centre’s activities annually including its financial management and compliance with university policies, and shall report the results of that review to the Research Centre's Director and to the Vice President, Research by August 31 of each year.

3.5.3 The Director of an SFU-based Research Institute reports to the Vice President, Research. The Vice President, Research shall be responsible for overseeing all Research Institutes in which Simon Fraser University participates as a part of a multi-university consortium. The activities of Research Institutes shall be reviewed directly by the Vice President, Research. A list of all Research Institutes with a University-wide mandate appears in Appendix II.

3.5.4 The Vice President, Research shall deliver to the Senate Committee on University Priorities (SCUP) by October 31 of each year a summary report dealing with the activities of all Research Centres and Research Institutes during the preceding year. SCUP shall forward this report for information to the Senate and to the Board of Governors.

3.6 Establishing, Reviewing and Discontinuing Research Centres and Research Institutes

3.6.1 With the application for the establishment of a Research Centre or Institute, a Constitution must be submitted that specifies the following:

  1. a statement of its special purpose;
  2. a provision for the appointment of a Director;
  3. a statement recognizing the obligation to conduct its activities in accordance with University policies; and
  4. a statement of its internal governing procedure.
  5. For Research Centres, the application must be approved by the appropriate Faculty Dean.

3.6.2 Applications shall be submitted to the Vice President, Research, who will forward supported applications to Senate (through SCUP) for approval.

3.6.3 Research Centres and Research Institutes will normally be established for a term of 5 years.

3.6.4 Renewal will be upon application via the Dean and the Vice President, Research, to SCUP, and will be contingent on past performance, financial sustainability, and its continuing purpose.

3.6.5 In considering applications for renewal, the accomplishments of Research Centres and Research Institutes will be measured against their stated initial goals and plans. Specifically, the impact must be demonstrated of a Research Centre or Institute in enhancing research over and above what would have been accomplished by individual faculty members.

3.6.6 The Dean(s) of the Faculties involved and the Vice President, Research will comment on the report and recommend renewal or termination. The proposal will then be forwarded to SCUP, which will vote on the renewal application and report its decision to Senate.

3.6 7 The Vice President, Research may recommend to the President termination prior to the end of the term of a Research Centre or Institute. In such cases, the Director shall have an opportunity to appeal the recommendation before the President makes a final decision.

3.7 Rights and Obligations of Research Centres and Research Institutes

3.7.1 Acting under the authority of its Director, and subject to section 3.4.1c, Research Centres and Research Institutes have the right to:

  1. use the University's name, address, and symbols in connection with its activities;
  2. solicit external grants and contracts in the University's name;
  3. request the maintenance of university budgetary accounts and reports;
  4. use the assistance of Human Resources in hiring employees;
  5. direct the duties of its employees; and
  6. apply for university support. .

3.7.2 The Director of a Research Centre and Research Institute has the obligation to:

  1. approve all contracts to be undertaken by or on behalf of the Research Centre and Research Institute, and further obtain the approval of the responsible Dean and the Vice President, Research for any contract;
  2. submit a written report to the responsible Dean or Vice President, Research on the units’ activities, including all contractual obligations entered into by or on behalf of the unit, once annually for the twelve months ending March 31 of each year, by no later than June 30 of each year;
  3. submit an annual financial statement showing revenues and expenditures for the twelve months ending March 31 of each year, by no later than June 30 of each year.
  4. Normally, the Director is not entitled to teaching relief or financial compensation.

3.8 Membership

3.8.1 The Director of a Research Centre or an SFU-based Research Institute normally must be a continuing faculty member of the University.  

3.8.2  Faculty, graduate students, and research associates are eligible for membership in Research Centres and Research Institutes.

4.0 Scope

4.1 This policy encompasses all Research Centres, Research Institutes, and similar organizations at Simon Fraser University that are not parts of established administrative units.

5.0 Authority

This Policy is administered under the authority of the Vice President, Research.