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Minutes for November 2000

November 13, 2000

Attendees: Bill Blass (chair), Gayle Baker (Co-Vice-Chair), Andrew Kramer (Co-Vice-Chair), Doug Birdwell (Co-Vice-Chair), Mark Dadmun, Barbara Dewey, Chanaka Edirisinghe, David Fox, Arlene Garrison, Nathan Hammer, Marion Hansen, Thomas Handler, Zoe Hoyle, Nathan Johnson, Faye Muly, Elizabeth Southerland, Bruce Tonn, Karen Welch

  • Introductory Remarks:
    • Bill Blass, member of the search committee for the Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs, provided members with a schedule for the search. He also described the activities in the process to date.
  • Updates from the Office of Research & Information Technology:
    • Arlene Garrison – Research Innovations/Research Centers of Excellence
      Garrison updated the Council on the status of the large proposals for Centers of Excellence. Twenty proposals were received and are being internally and externally reviewed. Members of Dr. Gilley’s committee are not completely satisfied with the financial planning in the proposals and have recommended that the top proposals have a more detailed financial analysis. The committee is interested in the return on the University’s investment. The selections will be determined at the end of November.Small center proposals are out for technical review and are due after Thanksgiving. Garrison anticipates issuing a request for full proposals from a large number of the 67 submitted proposals before the end of the year, giving investigators time to work on them over the break.
  • Research and the UT Libraries
    Barbara Dewey, Dean of the UT Library, told Council members that the library of a comprehensive research institution, like the University of Tennessee, must cover all disciplines and continue to collect resources in print format, as well as electronic. She described some of the UT Library’s digital initiatives and stated that the Library’s mission is to not only support UT research initiatives, but also provide access for the associated research output.With respect to becoming one of the top 25 public research institutions, Dewey described the UT Library’s funding needs for FY 2001 and provided comparative data and benchmarking data from libraries at peer and top 25 institutions. The UT Library ranks 39th of the libraries belonging to the Association of Research Libraries (ARL). It will need at least $3.8 million in recurring funding to move up to the funding levels of the top 25 libraries.Dewey is investigating cooperation for electronic resources with other libraries within the UT system. Garrison responded that there is a need for common access to resources for research collaborators located at the different UT campuses.

    In closing, Dewey stated that a strong library is critical to a strong research institution.

  • Old business:
    • Faculty development leave (sabbatical) — Andrew Kramer reviewed the joint proposal for a Faculty Development Program from the Research Council and the Faculty Senate Professional Development Committee. The proposal was distributed along with a spreadsheet comparing similar policies at top 25 and peer institutions. Blass suggested that another benefit of the program would be increased visibility of UT faculty. Birdwell also pointed out that many candidates for faculty positions ask about sabbaticals at UT. Such a policy could enhance recruiting. The proposal was endorsed unanimously.

Meeting adjourned at 4:46 p.m.