Conference: Research Analytics Summit: Building Capacity, Empowering Skill Transfer, and Energizing a Growing Community

Grants and Contracts Details


Project Summary Overview The use of data analytics and data-informed decision making (research analytics) is in its infancy at major research administration conferences. Many professionals working in this space have taken it on as only a small part of their position duties, and they are often not trained in data analysis or business intelligence systems. The proposed summit will provide an opportunity for interested professionals to come together to learn specific technical skills, network, build best practices, and create a community of practice. The summit will focus on findings and a framework developed from two funded research studies and will have the main themes of (1) Human Capital and (2) Technology and Skills. These themes will allow for interconnectivity of leadership, culture, governance, and technology—all in an effort to provide informed and strategic decision-making within the research enterprise. In recent decades, the use of data analytics to inform decision-making has become a standard practice in a variety of business and organizational settings (Brynjolfsson & McElheran, 2016). Intellectual Merit: The goal of this project is to host a national summit that focuses on key areas related to the use of data-informed decision-making within research administration; we call this Research Analytics. For this proposal we define research analytics as: the science of analyzing data to make data- informed decisions for strategic planning in research and development and business processes around research administration functions. The purpose of research analytics is to identify areas that could be enhanced, troubleshoot current issues discovered by data, and resolve them with evidence-based solutions. Insights derived from research analytics can strengthen research performance, build capacity, and strengthen knowledge and discovery within higher education institutions (Robershaw & Wolf, 2023). Outcomes of the meeting include a professional mentoring framework, professional collaboration, professional development, conference proceeding materials, and the development for future National Science Foundation funding, such as a Research Coordination Network Grant focused on research analytics. Broader Impacts: While research in higher education has historically focused on R1 and R2 institutions and is often concentrated in certain geographical locations, the GRANTED initiative highlights the need to encourage academic inquiry and knowledge creation from a wide variety of higher education institutions, especially emerging research institutions and minority-serving institutions (MSI’s). At Tribal Colleges and Universities (TCUs) in particular, there is a unique opportunity to support innovative epistemological and ontological frameworks that may offer important insights for dealing with issues like climate change, food security, and environmental justice. With opportunities for different kinds of knowledge creation and problem-solving, it is critical to effectively support new models for what counts as basic and applied research. Using data analytics to better understand, support, and identify unique characteristics of academic inquiry at ERIs would be a unique and valuable outcome of the summit, which would be intentionally inclusive in welcoming diverse institutions into the research administration community. The potentially new ways of creating and apprehending knowledge through research at TCUs should not be seen as competing with traditional modes of academic inquiry. Rather, these frameworks can complement mainstream western science, offering a new lens for inquiry, discovery, and understanding.
Effective start/end date9/1/2312/31/24


  • National Science Foundation: $135,232.00


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