Saint Louis University

1.325 Research Space Review Committee

SECTION Organization NO. 1.325
CHAPTER Committees - School of Medicine DATE ISSUED DATE REVISED
1998 05/01/13

SUBJECT Research Space Review Committee

I. Policy

The School of Medicine shall have a committee for evaluation of productivity and assignment of
laboratory research space.

II. Purpose

Establish criteria used to evaluate research productivity, the annual process of evaluating
research productivity and the criteria for possible exemption from reassignment of research
space.

III. Procedure


The Dean, upon the recommendations of the Committee on Faculty Affairs, shall appoint
six faculty members to the committee - three faculty from the basic science departments and three faculty from the clinical departments. Department chairs are not eligible for membership. The Chair of the committee shall be appointed by the Dean for a term of two years and shall alternate between basic and clinical sciences. The Chair shall not be eligible to serve continuous terms longer than two consecutive years. Appointments to the committee shall be staggered to assure no more than two to three new members in any year. Ex officio members shall include the Associate Dean for Research, the Associate Dean for Finance and Administration and the Senior Planning Associate. The Committee shall meet once each year with additional meetings scheduled by the Chair as necessary to complete the annual reviews.

A. Criteria for Evaluating Research Productivity: Three criteria for evaluating research
productivity are listed below in descending order of importance:

- total direct research expenditures per net square foot of research space
- total indirect cost recoveries per net square foot of research space
- research-related scholarly activity

In each case, the need for research space must be justified based on the quality of
the principal investigator’s research program as well as the current level of funding

1. Total Direct Research Expenditures per Net Square Foot of Research Space

This evaluation criterion is applied to all principal investigators, and each researcher
evaluated using this criterion must demonstrate that research space is required.
Although the amount of grant or contract support for a research project is neither the
exclusive nor even the major criterion for evaluating worthiness or productivity of the
research, it is the criterion that is most easily evaluated. Furthermore, extramural
support assures that the research was evaluated by experienced investigators
outside the institution and that funding has withstood widespread competition among
investigators nationally or regionally.

Therefore, a principal measure of productivity is the principal investigator’s total
direct research expenditures divided by the principal investigator’s total net square
feet of research space, excluding the principal investigator’s office (DIR$/NSF). For
this initial measurement of productivity, total direct research expenditures is defined
as all research expenditures attributed to a principal investigator from ledger 3
(Sponsored Programs) accounts reported through the University’s financial record
system (Banner). Reasons for focusing on ledger 3 expenditures for this initial
measurement of productivity include: 1) ledger 3 extramural funding sources provide
additional indirect dollars important for paying overhead for research space, and 2)
the vast majority of these extramurally awarded funds support research that requires
wet bench laboratory space, the focus of this research space policy. Expenditures
from ledger 2 (Designated) or other accounts may be associated with legitimate
needs for wet bench laboratory space, and although they will not be included in the initial measurement of productivity outlined above, can be considered later in the process of research space evaluation.


If a principal investigator’s DIR$/NSF is at the 90th percentile or above
compared with all other principal investigators assigned wet bench research space,
or is at or below $100 DIR$/NSF, the Research Space Utilization Committee will
complete a more detailed analysis as outlined in Section B below to determine
whether either an increase or decrease in space assignment should be
recommended to the Dean.

2. Total Indirect Cost Recovery per Net Square Foot of Research Space

This evaluation criterion is applied to all principal investigators, and each researcher
evaluated using this criterion must demonstrate that research space is required.
Although the amount of grant or contract support for a research project is neither the
exclusive nor even the major criterion for evaluating worthiness or productivity of the
research, in common with direct cost recovery, indirect cost recoveries are also an
important parameter.

A principal measurement of productivity will be the principal investigator’s total
indirect cost recovery divided by the principal investigator’s total net square feet of
research space (IC$/NSF). Indirect cost recoveries are defined as those funds
reported through the University’s financial record system (Banner) on research
expenditures from all ledger 3 extramural sources. If the IC$/NSF is at the 90th
percentile or above compared with all other principal investigators assigned wet
bench research space, or is at the 25th percentile 3 or below, then the Research
Space Utilization Committee will complete a more detailed analysis as outlined in
Section B below to determine whether either an increase or decrease in space
assignment should be recommended to the Dean.

3. Research-Related Scholarly Activities and Non-traditional Funding

This criterion is applied to individual research programs that are directly and
negatively impacted by space reassignment, and not to entire departments. Each
researcher wishing to be evaluated using this criterion must demonstrate that
research space is required. Its purpose is to allow the evaluation of the research
space needs of a principal investigator who is at or below $100 DIR$/NSF or at or
below the 25th percentile on IC$/NSF as described in Sections A.1 and A.2 above.
The evaluation is based on productivity as measured by non-traditional funding
sources, such as research involving clinical trials or industry-sponsored research
(ledger 2 funds), that were not subjected to conventional peer review such as an NIH
study section. Other criteria that may be evaluated when considering laboratory
research space reassignments are scholarly parameters such as patents and
royalties, or the number and quality of current publications related to work performed
in the research space under consideration.

B. Evaluation Procedure: Evaluations will be conducted by a standing Research Space
Review Committee (RSRC) appointed by the Dean with three members from the basic
science departments, three members from the clinical science departments, a committee
chairperson selected at large from the senior faculty, the Associate Dean for Finance and
Administration (ex-officio, non-voting), the Associate Dean for Research (ex-officio, non-
voting), and the Senior Planning Associate (ex-officio, non-voting). Department
chairpersons are not eligible for membership. The RSRC chairperson will serve a term of
two (2) years, is expected to alternate between the basic and clinical sciences, and is not
eligible to serve continuous terms longer than two (2) consecutive years. The term for
each committee member is three (3) continuous years, maximum. Appointments on the
RSRC are staggered, so that there are no more than two or possibly three new members
each year. The RSRC reports directly to the Dean and acts in an advisory capacity to the
Dean.


1. Annual Analysis:

On an annual basis, the Senior Planning Associate will analyze the productivity of
the research space for all principal investigators according to Criteria A.1. and A.2.,
and report the findings to the RSRC. The direct and indirect recoveries per net square
foot of research space are calculated for principal investigators in every department.
The chairperson of each department is given the opportunity to review their faculty
space assignments and expenditure information prior to its communication to the
RSRC to assure its accuracy. At this point the chairperson can report additional
extramural sources of direct and indirect funds (non-ledger 3 funds) used by individual
faculty for legitimate wet bench laboratory research projects. Internal funding, defined
as funding from bridge grants, seed grants, residuals from clinical trials, startup
packages, etc., is not to be included in the initial sorts reviewed by the RSRC
(however, is recognized as potentially 4 important for considerations later in the review
process). Fund 3 direct expenses or indirect costs that do not require wet bench
laboratory research space, also should be identified and expenditure totals reduced
appropriately.

In the case of multiple investigators funded from a single grant or contract, credit is
distributed to each individual investigator based on information agreed upon by the co-
investigators. The amount of funding attributed to each co-investigator is deducted
from the principal investigator’s portion of the grant. After receiving input from the
chairpersons, two rank listings of faculty are created, one based on DIR$/NSF and
another based on IC$/NSF. Faculty members above the 90th percentile for either
DIR$/NSF or IC$/NSF, or at or below $100 DIR$/NSF or at or below the 25th
percentile for IC$/NSF are identified. Faculty members who fall into these categories
for two consecutive years are discussed in detail by the RSRC. Prior to RSRC
discussions of these faculty members, the appropriate chairpersons are asked to
provide any additional information relevant for consideration of research productivity
(e.g., additional funding that requires wet bench lab space, recent grant submissions
and scores, recent publications).

2. Reassignment of Space to Productive Investigators:

Principal investigators who are identified as being in the top 90th percentile for $/NSF
of total direct or indirect support and who are identified as having too little space
based on their research productivity are considered for increased space allocation.
The RSRC makes recommendations to the Dean after conferring with the department
chairperson and the principal investigator, and after determining whether an actual
need for additional space exists. The decision of the Dean is final.

3. Reassignment of Space from Unproductive Investigators and Description of the
Appeals Process:

Research space of investigators who are below the threshold as defined in Section A
for two consecutive years will be further scrutinized by the RSRC.


a. The RSRC evaluates the principal investigator according to the criteria stated in
Section A and meets with the principal investigator’s chairperson. If the RSRC is
satisfied with the explanation by the chairperson, then the Dean is informed of
the RSRC’s recommendation for retention of space. The decision of the Dean is
final.

b. In the event that the RSRC finds that there are grounds for recommending
reassignment of space, this recommendation is forwarded to the principal
investigator and the chairperson. The principal investigator and chairperson may
ask for a meeting with the RSRC within 30 days to appeal the decision and
request retention of space. If this is done, then it is the responsibility of the
principal investigator and chairperson to provide the RSRC with any new and
relevant data to support the request. The RSRC will make a recommendation to
the Dean. Before space is reassigned to a principal investigator in another
department, the chairperson is given the opportunity to make a case to the
Dean for reassignment or retention of space within the department. The
decision of the Dean is final.

c. The Dean may temporarily exempt an investigator from further review on the
basis of institutional priorities, as discussed in C.1.

C. Exemptions from the Reallocation Process

1. Institutional Priorities:

A principal investigator may be allowed to retain, temporarily, more space than
permissible under Criteria A.1., A.2., and A.3. during a reasonable period of program
development (a maximum of three years, but reviewed no less often than annually)) if
such retention is in accordance with the School’s overall academic plans (see C.2.).
For example, under-utilized space might provide the opportunity for a department to
attract new leadership or to launch a new program. Therefore, departmental or School
of Medicine plans for such new ventures are considered by the Dean before
reallocation of space.

2. Special Circumstances
 

The Dean may reassign or approve retention of space for an individual principal
investigator or department under special circumstances.

IV. Reference

Attachment A--Membership List

V. Rescission

None

VI. Review Date

Reviewed annually and revised when necessary and appropriate.

Approved: Philip O. Alderson, M.D., Dean, School of Medicine

Research Space Review Committee Members List (2015-2016)     

Member

Department

Term

Sharon E. Frey, M.D.
Committee Chairperson

Internal Medicine

07/10-06/16*

Andrew Butler, Ph.D.

Pharmacology & Physiology

07/14-06/17

David Ford, Ph.D.

Biochemistry and Molecular Biology

07/12-06/18*

Susan E. Crawford, D.O.

Pathology

07/13-06/16

Oleg Kisselev, Ph.D.

Ophthalmology

07/13-06/16

Lynda A. Morrison, Ph.D.

Molecular Microbiology and Immunology

07/10-06/16*

 

* Indicates reappointment for one additional term.

Ex Officio
Joel Eissenberg, Ph.D.
Associate Dean, Research

John P. Long, D.V.M.
Chair, Department of Comparative Medicine

Denise Johnson
Director, Planning and Operations

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