Inquiry, Research and Creative Discovery

Power the Future Through Inquiry, Research and Creative Discovery

GOAL B1: Achieve national prominence as an emerging, top-tier research university.

Objective B1.1 – Establish a campus-wide culture of grant seeking and other scholarship that supports faculty participation in the research enterprise, diversifies the size and complexity of the University’s award portfolio and values the contributions of all fields and disciplines.

  • Action B1.1.1 – Identify grant-seeking success, publications, and/or creative activity as expected outcomes for tenure-track and research faculty in alignment with tenure requirements for academic disciplines.
  • Action B1.1.2 – Expand internal (institutional) research funding opportunities to support the development of research and creative activities.
  • Action B1.1.3 – Enhance and expand training for grant seeking from a broader range of funding sources.
  • Action B1.1.4 – Build a culture that encourages and supports entrepreneurship, innovation and use-inspired research through Ventureprise participation, training and support for commercialization of technologies.
  • Action B1.1.5 – Seek and support appointments for faculty on external grant review panels and councils as well as regional and statewide boards.

Objective B1.2 – Update policies and streamline procedures and institutional administration infrastructure to support the pursuit of sponsored research.

  • Action B1.2.1 – Improve grants and contracts administration to become more service focused and scalable.
  • Action B1.2.2 – Streamline and redesign policies, procedures, workflow and training of all offices that support grants and contracts administration to improve functionality and enhance operations.
  • Action B1.2.3 – Maximize the capabilities of the new electronic research administration platform, Niner Research, to integrate processes and increase efficiency, accuracy and speed of research administration.
  • Action B1.2.4 – Boost support for sponsored research, scholarship, creative discovery, innovation and entrepreneurship efforts through improved customer service.

Objective B1.3

Enhance University infrastructure (including shared equipment and facilities) for research, scholarship and creative discovery.

  • Action B1.3.1 – Plan for continuous updating of existing research facilities to support current needs and future priorities.
  • Action B1.3.2 – Align investments in equipment, instrumentation and library resources and services with research priorities, regional industry needs and future-oriented opportunities.

Objective B1.4

Adopt policies and procedures that support the University’s ability to capture and report sponsored research activity and investment in research and scholarship.

  • Action B1.4.1 – Create procedures that ensure the full and accurate reporting of research-related expenditures.
  • Action B1.4.2 – Develop policies that encourage the full recovery and reinvestment of facilities and administrative (F&A) costs.
  • Action B1.4.3 – Develop and adopt a set of common research metrics to monitor progress to toptier research university status.
GOAL B2: Advance the research mission by recruiting, nurturing and retaining world-class, diverse faculty, staff and students.

Objective B2.1 – Increase student retention and equitable on-time graduation.

  • Action B2.1.1 – Adopt governing structures to establish a cluster-hire process reflecting areas of disciplinary strength.
  • Action B2.1.2 – Seek support to establish new endowed chairs and professorships, and to fund visiting professors and artists-in-residence through collaborations across the offices of the Provost and Research and Economic Development and the Division of University Advancement.
  • Action B2.1.3 – Expand the existing University-sponsored postdoctoral scholar program and create a supportive culture and climate for these researchers.
  • Action B2.1.4 – Support hiring and success of non-tenure-track, research-dedicated faculty in priority areas with a career progression track.
  • Action B2.1.5 – Adopt a proactive and preemptive retention strategy for faculty, research staff and postdoctoral trainees.
  • Action B2.1.6 – Improve support, including bolstering mentorship programs for early-career faculty to ensure career progression, grant-seeking success and productivity in publications and creative expression.
  • Action B2.1.7 – Provide competitive salaries for new hires and address salary compression (and inversion) for existing faculty and staff involved with research, scholarship and creative discovery in congruence with governing structures.
  • Action B2.1.8 – Implement a comprehensive strategy to train and support the specialized staff needed to support cutting-edge research.

Objective B2.2

Prepare undergraduate and graduate students for careers involving research, scholarship, creative discovery and entrepreneurship.

  • Action B2.2.1 – Create and expand existing opportunities for undergraduate and graduate students to fully participate in research, creative expression, community-engaged projects and entrepreneurial initiatives.
  • Action B2.2.2 – Increase the success of the next generation of scholars, researchers, artists, innovators and entrepreneurs through diversified and expanded support mechanisms, funding, professional development and mentoring.
GOAL B3: Expand post-baccalaureate education, doctoral studies and postdoctoral training and achieve the highest recognition for exemplary programs.

Objective B3.1 – Grow and expand key graduate programs that contribute to top-tier research university metrics.

  • Action B3.1.1 – Launch new doctoral programs in areas that contribute to becoming a top-tier research University.
  • Action B3.1.2 – Grow and strengthen high-demand programs that are poised for growth and enhance our national reputation as a top-tier research University.
  • Action B3.1.3 – Align doctoral training with areas of excellence and regional industry needs.
  • Action B3.1.4 – Expand and align library resources to support existing and new doctoral programs that contribute to top-tier university metrics.

Objective B3.2 – Improve recruitment strategies and financial support for graduate students.

  • Action B3.2.1 – Employ strategies to identify outstanding undergraduates who show interest in research, scholarship and creative discovery, educate them about the benefits and opportunities of UNC Charlotte graduate education and recruit them to become members of Niner Nation.
  • Action B3.2.2 – Implement strategies for increasing the number of students supported by sponsored awards.
  • Action B3.2.3 – Actively seek and win externally sponsored graduate traineeships and fellowships
GOAL B4: Enhance the academic reputations of all colleges and foster signature areas of research, scholarship and creative discovery.

Objective B4.1 – Develop world-class signature research areas and academic programs that advance the University’s mission to address urban challenges.

  • Action B4.1.1 – Identify, nurture and accelerate the University’s signature research areas into international prominence.
  • Action B4.1.2 – Raise the number of graduate programs in the top 50 national and international rankings through development, support and visibility efforts.
  • Action B4.1.3 – Identify urban challenges and ensure programs exist that are aligned with these challenges.

Objective B4.2 – Celebrate faculty, staff and student successes (e.g., grants, fellowships, honorific awards, commissions, publications) of all sizes and from all disciplines.

  • Action B4.2.1 – Identify, nurture and support faculty, staff and students applying for prestigious regional, national and international awards and fellowships.
  • Action B4.2.2 – Develop and implement a comprehensive communication plan for research awards and scholarly and creative success.
  • Action B4.2.3 – Celebrate and broadly share the news about UNC Charlotte faculty, staff and students who win national and international honors and fellowships.
  • Action B4.2.4 – Expand the number and prominence of University awards and types of recognitions that celebrate faculty, staff and student excellence in research, creative expression, entrepreneurship and innovation.

GOAL B5: Bolster interdisciplinary, intra-institutional and inter-institutional, and global collaborations to address complex challenges.

Objective B5.1 – Foster and grow collaborations across disciplines within UNC Charlotte.

  • Action B5.1.1 – Recognize and promote collaboration across disciplines, departments and colleges in research, creativity and entrepreneurship, provide appropriate credit to all departments involved, and value the work from collaborations in promotion and tenure policies.
  • Action B5.1.2 – Develop and implement University policies and procedures that support intrainstitutional collaborations while identifying and removing barriers that hinder these collaborations.

Objective B5.2 –

Grow national and global collaborations to expand UNC Charlotte’s ability to address complex global challenges.

  • Action B5.2.1 – Expand University support services and infrastructure for complex, interdisciplinary proposal development and award management to support collaborations with other institutions.
  • Action B5.2.2 – Bolster the capacity of Research and Economic Development and the Office of International Programs to support inter-institutional and global collaborations.
  • Action B5.2.3 – Support international collaborative research and exchange programs.