STRATEGIES FOR COMPETITIVENESS ACADEMIC RESEARCH
223 Pages
English
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STRATEGIES FOR COMPETITIVENESS ACADEMIC RESEARCH

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223 Pages
English

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STRATEGIES FOR COMPETITIVENESS IN ACADEMIC RESEARCH J. SCOTT HAUGER AND CELIA MCENANEY, EDITORS COMMITTEE ON SCIENCE, ENGINEERING, AND PUBLIC POLICY AMERICAN ASSOCIATION FOR THE ADVANCEMENT OF SCIENCE The AAAS Board of Directors, in accordance with Association policy, has approved the publication of this work as a contribution to the understanding of an important area. Any interpretations and conclu- sions are those of the authors and do not necessarily represent views of the Board or the Council of the Association. Printed in the United States of America International Standard Book Number: 0-87168-669-4 Copyright © 2000 American Association for the Advancement of Science 1200 New York Avenue, NW, Washington DC 20005 USA Printed on recycled paper CONTENTS FOREWORD V CHAPTER ONE RESEARCH COMPETITIVENESS 1 AND NATIONAL SCIENCE POLICY ALBERT H. TEICH CHAPTER TWO STRATEGIC OPTIONS TO ENHANCE THE RESEARCH 11 COMPETITIVENESS OF EPSCOR UNIVERSITIES IRWIN FELLER CHAPTER THREE BUILDING STATE SCIENCE:37 THE EPSCOR EXPERIENCE W. HENRY LAMBRIGHT CHAPTER FOUR STRATEGIC PLANNING FOR RESEARCH 77 COMPETITIVENESS J. SCOTT HAUGER CHAPTER FIVE COLLABORATIVE STRATEGIES: GOOD SCIENCE 115 PLUS BAD MANAGEMENT EQUALS BAD SCIENCE JON M. VEIGEL CONTENTS CHAPTER SIX THEORETICAL CONSIDERATION OF 151 COLLABORATION IN SCIENTIFIC RESEARCH JUAN D. ROGERS CHAPTER SEVEN DISMANTLING DISADVANTAGE: WOMEN, 179 MINORITIES, AND EPSCOR STATES AS AMERICAN EGALITARIAN PROJECTS SUSAN E. COZZENS ABOUT THE AUTHORS 199 ADVISORY COMMITTEE MEMBERS 201 PARTICIPANTS AT CONFERENCE 203 INDEX 205 — iv — FOREWORD In 1996, the American Association for the Advancement of Sci- ence (AAAS), through its Directorate for Science and Policy Programs, under- took a major program in support of the National Science Foundation’s (NSF) Experimental Program to Stimulate Competitive Research (EPSCoR). The re- sulting Research Competitiveness Program (RCP) sought to bring the resources of the national science, engineering, and science policy communities to the service of improving research competitiveness in the then-19 (now 20) states that participate in the NSF program. The program was conducted through three inter-related tasks: First, the Leadership Development Task conducted a series of eight workshops addressing topics nominated by the EPSCoR com- munity. Second, the Direct Assistance Task recruited experts nationwide to visit institutions in the EPSCoR states to provide expertise and assistance in addressing specific problems and opportunities related to research competi- tiveness. Over a four-year period, more than fifty site visits were made to institutions in all twenty states. Finally, an analytical task, labeled, “Examining Research Competitiveness,” undertook science policy research to develop a better understanding of the nature of competitiveness in academic research and to develop strategies for enhancing research competitiveness. This book is the product of the analytical task, which was an out- growth of prior work conducted by AAAS. The prior project, entitled “Com- petitiveness in Research: A Review and Assessment,” resulted in a book, Com- — v — FOREWORD petitiveness in Academic Research, edited by Albert H. Teich (AAAS, 1996), to which this volume is a companion. The seven essays in that first book com- prised a systematic approach to the definition and assessment of research competitiveness. Four of the authors represented in that book have also con- tributed chapters to this volume. Al Teich, Irwin Feller, Henry Lambright, and Susan Cozzens provide an element of intellectual continuity that links the two programs and their products. The three tasks of the Research Competitiveness Program were inter- related. The relationships were both personal and thematic. The personal relationships were those developed among the AAAS staff, researchers and research administrators in the EPSCoR states, and several hundred scientists and engineers nationwide who contributed their time and expertise to ad- dress issues of interest to the EPSCoR community. By bringing these people together in different permutations and combinations for site visits, workshops, reviews, symposia, and state and national EPSCoR conferences, RCP helped to promote a new level of national awareness of and interest in issues of research competitiveness and the NSF EPSCoR Program. The sometimes un- sung heroes in this network were the NSF EPSCoR Project Directors and their staff who identified issues and problems, provided entrÈe into the local re- search community and recruited participants for workshops and meetings, all in addition to their daily workloads. Their dedication and their many contri- butions to the advancement of science in the EPSCoR states deserve recogni- tion across the research and science policy communities. It was the NSF EPSCoR Project Directors, in the main, who identified the themes that were addressed by the three tasks of the Research Competi- tiveness Program. The AAAS staff sought to be responsive to their insights and to integrate across issues as experienced in the twenty states, in order to provide a conceptual framework or agenda for addressing those issues that transcends the individual state experiences. Several issues arose again and again in various states and in various contexts. Understanding and promoting the relationship between academic research and local economic and social development was one topic of high interest to the EPSCoR states. Understanding and creating opportunities for partnering among academic, industrial and governmental actors was another. These topics were addressed in many direct assistance projects and in two leadership development workshops. They also provided the theme for the FOREWORD program of the 1998 National NSF EPSCoR Conference, held in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina, as developed and presented by AAAS and the South Carolina EPSCoR program. Another important theme to emerge from the activities of the AAAS Research Competitiveness Program was that of identifying and implementing strategies for enhancing research competitiveness at the institutional level. A recurring question was, “What specific actions can this university take to be- come more competitive?” Within the context of the NSF EPSCoR program, the most salient definition of research competitiveness is the ability to win a proportionate share of competitive research grants. The general strategic ques- tion, therefore, is “How should we invest our limited resources in order to build the capacity to win an increasing share of competitive research grants?” Under AAAS auspices, Irwin Feller and Harry Lambright were asked to look at this question from different analytical perspectives. Professor Feller’s study focused on the national social and economic environment within which emerging universities must work to achieve research competitiveness. He sought to articulate a menu of strategies that EPSCoR universities might inter- pret and pursue within their local contexts. Professor Lambright undertook to answer the question, “What have been the historically important factors that have helped or hindered the enhancement of research competitiveness in the EPSCoR states?” through a series of case studies. Their results were presented at an invitational science policy conference organized by AAAS and held at Coeur d’Alene, Idaho in October 1999. Revised versions of their papers are presented here as Chapters 2 and 3. The Coeur d’Alene Conference focused on three of the nine strategies for research competitiveness as discussed by Irwin Feller in Chapter 2, namely the pursuit of large-scale proposals, of niche and emerging research areas, and of collaborative proposals. Each of these general strategies, like the other six, calls for the allocation and management of resources toward an institu- tional goal over a period of time. From the outset, many of the universities’ requests to AAAS for direct assistance have been concerned with some aspect of strategic planning—from the selection of opportunities for investment to the identification of milestones and the measure of outcomes from invest- ments in particular research strategies. The level of interest has been such that plans are underway for a ninth leadership development workshop, with NSF support, to be held in conjunction with the AAAS Annual Meeting in February FOREWORD 2001. This workshop will address best practices in academic strategic plan- ning. Chapter 4 presents an essay by Scott Hauger, director of the AAAS Research Competitiveness Program, which considers some of the problems faced by strategic planners in an academic context, and suggests approaches to their solution. The next two chapters focus on one of the strategies for research competitiveness that provoked the most interest during the course of the Research Competitiveness Program—that of inter-institutional collaboration. During the program’s first year, NSF EPSCoR Program Directors from six Mid- western states asked AAAS staff if they could develop and conduct a leader- ship development workshop designed to promote research collaboration us- ing the advanced networking capabilities being established by the Great Plains Network. That workshop, held in Sioux Falls, South Dakota, in November 1997, sought to foster research collaborations in the Earth Systems Sciences. Collaboration is an attractive strategy to institutions that individually lack the resources to win a grant that they can win by working together. One of the speakers at that workshop was Jon Veigel, former president of Oak Ridge Associated Universities and former chair of the AAAS Committee on Science, Engineering and Public Policy (COSEPP), who addressed managerial issues intrinsic to inter-institutional research collaboration. This workshop proved so successful that during the following two years, four others modeled upon it were held at the request of NSF EPSCoR project directors. Each of these workshops addressed collaboration as a strat- egy for enhancing research competitiveness in one or more particular fields, from nanomaterials to astrophysics to identification technologies. During the same time, several direct assistance projects addressed specific opportunities for collaboration and the development of advanced information technologies in support of collaborative research. It is clear that collaborative research, especially in the pursuit of large-scale proposals, can present major chal- lenges to academic research administrators. Chapter 5 presents Jon Veigel’s latest thinking on this subject. Collaboration in research, of course, is more than a strategy for the leverage of resources. In many scientific fields, collaboration has become a common practice, even a prerequisite for competitiveness. Large scale and interdisciplinary research programs may require collaboration as a condition for entry by even the largest universities. Juan Rogers and his colleagues at — viii — FOREWORD Georgia Tech’s School of Public Policy have been studying research collabo- rations and have developed a theory of knowledge construction in collabora- tive settings that can inform the management of research collaborations. Be- cause of EPSCoR researchers’ interest in collaboration as a strategy for research competitiveness, AAAS invited Professor Rogers to reconsider some of his prior studies as they might inform this perspective. His analysis is presented in Chapter 6. The last word in this volume, Chapter 7, belongs to Susan Cozzens, who authored the first chapter in its predecessor volume. Professor Cozzens is chair of Georgia Tech’s School of Public Policy, and a current member of COSEPP. Her essay assumes a broader perspective, considering the EPSCoR program itself as a national strategy for investment in human capital, and comparing that strategy with others that have been or could be crafted toward meeting national goals for equity in the distribution and development of na- tional resources. The first word, fittingly, is that of Al Teich, who edited Competitive- ness in Academic Research, and who established AAAS’s programs in support of EPSCoR. His introductory essay considers the national context for competi- tiveness in research, providing a setting for the chapters that follow. Finally acknowledgements are due to those indispensable people, in addition to the authors, who made possible the activities that resulted in this book. Special thanks are due to the National Science Foundation for the fi- nancial support that made this project possible (Grant No. EPS-9634545). The NSF staff, especially Richard Anderson, Jim Hoehn, and Richard Hastings, deserve special recognition for their continuing interest and thoughtful guid- ance through out the project. Thanks are due as well to the current and former staff of the Research Competitiveness Program: Joanne Carney, Ed- ward Derrick, Jennifer Jones, Kei Koizumi, Zoe Barnard Miller, Michael MacDonald, Stephen Nelson, Robert Rich, Patricia Young, and Kuliva Wilburn, who worked to develop and implement the projects that instantiate the themes and issues explored in this book. Their work was carried out under the guid- ance of a Senior Advisory Committee whose members are listed at the end of this volume. We appreciate the efforts of editors Rebecca Brune and Stephen Lita, and production manager Kate Ramoth. But most especially, this book is dedicated to the science and engineering researchers and research adminis- trators at universities and other research institutions in the EPSCoR states, who — ix — FOREWORD are working to enhance research competitiveness in their states and for the advancement of science in the country and the world. J. Scott Hauger Celia McEnaney Washington, DC December 2000 — x —