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Overall Role/Responsibility

This includes the school dean, research dean, and all members of the dean’s administration.

Drive strategic planning and provide guidance across academic and research programs, fostering new and interdisciplinary research initiatives and collaborations. Manage research enterprise within the school. Work with the Office for Research and Vice President for Research to provide local direction and resources for the education, training, and implementation of all regulations as well as federal, sponsor and University policies and procedures. Set and confirm commitment to policies and regulations and take appropriate actions to ensure the University’s commitment to compliance and a safe research environment, meaning one that is inclusive and free from any form of discrimination or harassment. 


  • Allocate facilities, space, equipment, IT services, and other resources to research personnel/projects
  • Recruit and approve appointment of faculty and research positions
  • Oversee graduate student funding, in particular with respect to graduate assistantships and fellowships on research and training grants
  • Identify need for new school-based centers, and manage existing school-based centers (close, transfer, or merge)
  • Promote the school’s areas of priority for research funding with internal and external audiences

Proposals and Awards


Proposal Submission
  • In case of large proposals, assist investigators in proposal preparation and submission, including referrals to Research Development
  • Assist investigators in responding to funding opportunities
  • Provide reports for tracking funding trends
  • Foster and facilitate proposal development and promote interaction for large multi-disciplinary research opportunities
  • Review and endorse proposals for submission with a particular focus on cost share, space and effort commitments
Pre-Award Set-Up
  • Review pending awards with multiple schools/research centers to ensure committed resources are appropriate
  • Approve commitment of funds for pre-award account


  • Oversee grant spending and personnel effort to be sure award budgets are adhered to within allowable levels and that effort commitments are met
  • Provide executive guidance for unresolved issues
  • Provide cost share funding associated with proposal-stage commitments


  • Provide executive guidance for unresolved issues

Effort Reporting

  • Review terms of faculty employment (i.e. base salary, overall effort allocation) and communicate/document to faculty
  • Review and endorse proposals which include, but are not limited to: a) reasonableness of committed effort and b) any proposed committed cost sharing
  • Identify effort reporting issues for which guidance is necessary
  • With input from faculty, maintain practices that ensure compliance with regulations and policies
  • Responsible for school effort reporting compliance

Research Conduct

Human Research Participants

  • Foster and enable a compliant University human research protection program
  • Receive and assess reports of non-compliance
  • Support the education and training of personnel in support of an ethical human research program

Clinical Trials

  • Approve closing certification for clinical trial residual balances $25K and over

Animal Subjects

  • Promote a humane and ethical animal welfare program in compliance with applicable laws, regulations, and policies
  • Ensure compliance with Northwestern’s Assurance
  • Appoint Institutional Animal Care and Use Committee (IACUC) members
  • Communicate non-compliance to appropriate regulatory agencies
  • Ensure the education and training of personnel in support of humane animal care and use
  • Ensure the animal care program has the resources it needs to run effectively

Research Safety

  • Support compliance with all federal, state and local environmental, health, and safety regulations, as well as University and sponsoring agency, specific to research safety
  • Support the education and training of personnel in safe research practices

Research Integrity

  • Foster and promote a culture of research integrity at the school
  • Communicate the need for, and importance of, training and education
  • Report knowledge of allegations of research misconduct to the Provost, Vice President for Research, and Director of Research Integrity
  • Receive reports from research misconduct committees
  • Ensure compliance with Responsible Conduct of Research (RCR) training requirements

Conflict of Interest (COI)

  • Foster and promote a research environment for objectivity in research
  • Member of school level COI committee. Conduct regular reviews of potential conflicts of interest and conflicts of commitment. Prepare management plans for faculty as necessary and monitor adherence as required
  • Promote adherence to all sponsor and University regulations and policies

Patents and Inventions

  • Promote and support a culture of innovation and entrepreneurship
  • Work with Innovation and New Ventures Office (INVO) to be aware of and facilitate faculty innovation efforts

Export Controls

  • Foster an environment that disseminates research knowledge consistent with applicable laws, regulations, and policies
  • Promote adherence to all federal and University regulations and policies