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Research Administration

The responsibilities of the Associate Vice President for Research Administration include oversight of pre-award activities, such as proposal preparation and submission, award negotiation and management, sub-award issuance and monitoring; post-award activities, including financial reporting, financial compliance, invoicing, costing, audit and investigations support; electronic research administration; administrative oversight of regulatory compliance committees (including the use of human subjects, animal welfare, export controls, and conflicts of interest); research information, transparency, integrity and business intelligence analysis and strategic research administrative processes, including providing guidance and support to complex interdisciplinary Centers and Institutes.

Offices and Units:

The Office of Research Administration (ORA) is the designated pre-award administration office. ORA oversees and supports research activities across the University of Maryland’s research enterprise. ORA facilitates the submission of all sponsored project proposals on behalf of the University and helps researchers and business officers administer projects when agreements are awarded to the University, in accordance with the University System of Maryland (USM) Policy on Solicitation and Acceptance of Sponsored Projects (IV-2.00). 

The Assistant Vice President for Research Administration is authorized to sign documents related to the University’s pre-award functions, including but not limited to:proposals, applications, required certifications and assurances; grants, contracts, and similar documents, including subaward agreements, for sponsored research, instruction, training, service, testing and other sponsored activities; and non-funded related agreements such as those related to confidentiality and use of data and materials.

Proposals are reviewed and awards are negotiated to: ensure compliance with federal and state laws, regulations and university policy; contractual terms are appropriate for the work to be performed in a university environment; costs are allowable and reflective of the work being conducted and reports appropriate to sponsor requirements and university systems. 

The Office of Sponsored Programs Accounting and Compliance (SPAC) is the designated post-award administration office. SPAC facilitates cost analysis, financial and effort reporting, billing, and collection of funds for all federal, state, and private sponsored agreements across the University of Maryland research enterprise. SPAC handles sponsored-related audits and offers guidance to the research community on financial compliance matters relating to sponsored agreements on behalf of the University. 

The Assistant Vice President for Sponsored Programs Accounting and Compliance is authorized to sign documents related to the University’s costing and post-award functions, including but not limited to indirect cost (F&A) proposals, employee, benefits rate proposals, cost accounting disclosure statements (DS-2), sponsored-required financial reports and audit corrective action plans and resolutions. 

Sponsored program expenditures are reviewed, and related rates are negotiated to ensure compliance with federal and state laws, regulations, and university policy. These expenditures are reviewed for reasonableness, allowability, and allocability for the institution to be reimbursed for its costs to support the research enterprise.

The Business Office supports the operations of the Division and the Office of the Vice President for Research, as well as providing guidance and oversight on matters such as personnel and budget management, payroll, accounting, procurement, travel, and facilities. 

The UMD Human Research Protection Program (HRPP) includes the Institutional Review Board (IRB) - the committee that performs an ethical review of proposed research involving human subject research. The mission of the HRPP and IRB is to ensure the protection of human participants who choose to participate in research conducted by investigators at UMD and affiliates that is part of a broader framework of the responsible conduct of research.

The Institutional Animal Care and Use (IACUC) Office adheres to the belief that the development of knowledge necessary for the improvement of the health and well-being of humans as well as other animals requires in vivo experimentation with a wide variety of animal species. In particular, the IACUC observes the principles espoused in the Institute of Laboratory Animal Resources' Guide for the Care and Use of Laboratory Animals.

The Department of Laboratory Animal Resources (DLAR) provides the expertise, care and resources necessary to ensure the welfare of university animals through humane care and use. DLAR services include routine and emergency animal care, animal procurement, housing, veterinary care, assistance procuring consumable supplies and medications, investigator training, assistance with experimental design, and technical support for research protocols. In addition, DLAR assists in the development of IACUC protocols, including professional pre-review and veterinary consultation for protocols and amendments. DLAR also manages the new, state-of-the-art DLAR Imaging Core (DLARIC).

The Conflict of Interest (COI) Office oversees the COI process for UMD. Conflicts of interest can occur when members of the University community are in a position to gain, or appear to gain, financial advantage or personal benefit (broadly construed) arising from their University positions, either through outside professional activities or through their research, administrative, or educational actions or decisions at the University. Because University employees are also State employees, provisions in the Maryland Public Ethics Law and University Policies in regard to outside activities still apply.. University employees covered by the University Policy on Conflict of Interest and Conflict of Commitment share an obligation to conduct their professional affairs in a manner consistent with the University's mission and to conduct their relationships with each other and the University with candor and integrity. Conflicts—whether real or perceived— can undermine the integrity of UMD research and sponsored programs. The University requires employees to disclose actual or potential ethical, legal, financial, or other conflicts of interest and commitment.The majority of these conflicts of interest can be managed, but sometimes they cannot be managed and must be avoided. However, conflicts of interest must always be recognized, disclosed, and appropriately addressed. The COI Committee oversees the campus adherence to this policy.

The UMD Export Compliance Office provides direct support for researchers involved in any activity subject to export control including, but not limited to, international travels, shipping, controlling sensitive information, hosting international visitors, and collaborating with foreign entities. U.S. export laws govern the shipping of items out of the country and they also govern the release of sensitive information to foreign persons here on campus. Because cutting-technologies generally have a higher level of export control, the University’s leadership in many technology fields also means an increased level of exposure to U.S. export laws. The Export Compliance Office works closely with ORA to identify export compliance risks as early as possible in the research cycle.  When risks are identified, we consult with the PI and decide whether to negotiate changes to the award or take measures to mitigate the risks so that we can accept the award.  When we accept export-controlled research, the Export Compliance Office works closely with the research team to help them comply with the requirements in the most efficient manner possible.

The Office of Research Information Systems & Integration oversees the development, support, integration, and data feeds of information systems relating to research administration. Various reports are produced monthly and on an ad hoc basis for campus use to analyze data resulting from proposals submitted, awards accepted, and expenditures incurred.

The Office of Research Transparency and Outreach is responsible for the implementation and oversight of the Contractor Code of Business Ethics and Conduct policy, as well as managing and overseeing the research-related responsibilities in accordance with the UMD Consulting Policy (II.3.10[E]), including building campus awareness through training and outreach. The Director of Research Transparency & Outreach works with the campus community to address any questions, concerns, or issues related to the required reporting requirements associated with outside professional activities and any relevant federal regulations such as the National Security Presidential Memorandum 33 (NSPM-33).

The Institute for Governmental Service and Research (IGSR) is dedicated to improving the well-being of individuals and communities through its work in areas of public health and safety, justice administration, health information technologies, leadership and governance, and organizational effectiveness. Established in 1947 as a public service unit through which the flagship campus fulfills its land grant mission, the Institute partners with local governments, state and federal agencies, university researchers, and community organizations on projects designed to increase knowledge and improve policy, operations, and outcomes. IGSR’s service portfolio includes evaluation studies, community surveys, data analysis, strategic planning, training, and technical assistance.

Established in 2015, the University of Maryland Research Support Oversight Committee (RSOC) serves as an advisory group to the Senior Vice President and Provost, the Vice President for Research, and the Vice President for Administration for research related safety, compliance, and reputational risks. Those risks coupled with extensive compliance and reporting requirements related to extramural funding represent a significant burden on researchers and administrative systems at UMD. The RSOC charter ensures a coordinated approach to assessing, mitigating and monitoring these research enterprise-wide risks. The RSOC serves as one of UMD’s internal control measures to keep leadership abreast of the research environment and align resources accordingly. 

The Department of Environmental Safety, Sustainability and Risk (ESSR) at University of Maryland (UMD) was established to provide leadership in the identification and management of safety and environmental risks and to foster safety and sustainability.

Responsible Conduct of Research (RCR) is defined as "the practice of scientific investigation with integrity." It involves the awareness and application of established professional norms and ethical principles in the performance of all activities related to scientific research. The 2007 America COMPETES Act directed the National Science Foundation to require that all funded students and postdocs undergo training in RCR. The implementation of this requirement became effective January 4, 2010, requiring all institutions submitting proposals to NSF to certify that they have a training plan in place for undergraduate and graduate students and postdoctoral scholars who will be supported by NSF to conduct research. This certification must be in place at the time of proposal submission. Institutions are responsible for verifying that their undergraduate students, graduate students and postdoctoral scholars receive training.

The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration (FMCSA) Policy prohibits discrimination on grounds protected under Federal and Maryland law and Board of Regents policies. The University of Maryland is committed to creating and maintaining an educational, working, and living environment that is free from discrimination and harassment. University programs, activities, and facilities are available to all without regard to race, color, sex, gender identity or expression, sexual orientation, marital status, age, national origin, political affiliation, physical or mental disability, religion, protected veteran status, genetic information, personal appearance, or any other legally protected class. Retaliation against any individual who files a complaint or participates in an investigation under this Policy is strictly prohibited. In furtherance of the University’s commitment to equal opportunity, this Policy and associated procedures are established to address and remedy complaints of discrimination, harassment, and retaliation based on a protected class.

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