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Minutes for January 2001

January 29, 2001

Attendees: Bill Blass (chair), Gayle Baker (Co-Vice-Chair), Andrew Kramer (Co-Vice-Chair), J. Brice Bible, Mark Dadmun, Chanaka Edirisinghe, Nina Elliott, Pat Fisher, David Fox, Arlene Garrison, Nathan Hammer, Marion Hansen, Thomas Handler, Zoe Hoyle, Nathan Johnson, Ted Labotka, Lillian Mashburn, Anne Mayhew, Jim Moran, Faye Muly, Elizabeth Southerland, Bruce Tonn, Karen Welch

    • Introductory Remarks:
      • Bill Blass provided the Council with an update of the search for a Provost. Dates and times of upcoming open meetings with candidates were announced. Blass suggested that the evaluation of scholarly output and creative activity be a future discussion item.
      • The Office of Research has sent to department heads letters for the infrastructure solicitation for matching funds for research equipment. The call for the Provost’s Research Awards will be sent out soon.
      • Arlene Garrison stated that directors of the new Centers of Excellence have been preparing business plans and that Anne Mayhew and Katie High will be working on the procedures for proposals for the small centers.
    • Faculty titles:
      • Anne Mayhew, Associate Provost, Academic Affairs, described recent revisions to the proposal on faculty titles for the Faculty Handbook. The proposal will be reviewed by Faculty Senate in March.
    • Faculty development
      • Andrew Kramer reported on revisions to the proposal for a faculty development program in response to questions by members of Faculty Senate. Additional verbage was added for funding and the eligibility time clock. The revised proposal was accepted by Research Council.
    • Computing and research
      • J. Brice Bible, Assistant Vice President, ORIT, provided an overview of computing services that affect and/or are related to research:
        • Partnerships: DII has been working on partnerships with vendors (Dell, Sun, IBM). In order to improve technical support to academic units, DII has placed DII staff in some colleges on campus. They have also developed a pilot project with the Library for Digital Media Services for the faculty’s instructional needs.
        • VolNet:The New IRIS/SAP system will be coming up on April 2 and requires a reliable network infrastructure. The new backbone has been completed and the rewiring of the Knoxville campus has begun. Delays have been due to problems with vendors. Several wireless network pilot projects have been in operation due to President Gilley’s desire for the campus to become completely wireless.
        • High performance research computing: The SP2 computer has been operating at 90% utilization. Bible would like to do more in high performance computing area and plans to form a technical advisory group of faculty for input. Gayle Baker suggested that he consider representation from Research Council’s committee on Research Infrastructure.
        • Web development: A group has been formed to oversee the development of the UT web page. It will focus on creating a database-driven website. The University is testing the Framecast service, which provides advertising revenue to customers, on the home website for six months.
        • Faculty desktop refresh program: Notification will be sent out soon about the second phase of the refresh program, with one-third of the faculty being able to choose between either a Mac or a pc and either a desktop workstation or a portable with a docking station. Bible stated that faculty were going to be urged to opt for portable models. He provided an example of one of the portables for Council members to try out after the meeting.
      • Updates
        • Lillian Mashburn announced that NIH may experience funding cuts in the next budget year. She also commented on the need to fill several federal administrative positions in the sciences.
        • Gayle Baker distributed a handout on the Community of Science (COS), the new information service for funding opportunities and other research-related information. It will be accessible to faculty at UT in February. Training will be provided.

Meeting adjourned at 5:04 p.m.