Learn more about the external review of our centralized and decentralized research administration infrastructure and operations

Dear Colleagues,

Over the past several months we have shared a constructive dialogue through multiple venues including the SPARC and budget priorities process about new initiatives to excel People Reaching Optimal Performance and Excellence in University Life (PROPEL), Infrastructure for Innovative and Agile Science and Technology Applications (INSTAR), and Horizontally Accelerated Research Program (HARP).  These people, processes and interdisciplinary programs are now taking real shape in visible activities.  For example, the INSTAR initiative is well underway with the external review of the animal program at CSU.  Another INSTAR activity just set to launch is an external review of our centralized and decentralized research administration infrastructure and operations. 

We have engaged an outside consulting partner to assist us in the research administration review. Huron Consulting Group (Huron) will work with us to analyze the operational performance of research administration functions across CSU. The initial assessment phase of this initiative is anticipated to occur in April and May 2014.  The central objectives of the review will result in a better understanding of the resources currently available to support the research endeavor and provide recommendations to:

1)      Improve service to faculty

2)     Increase efficiency and effectiveness of current research resources

3)     Manage long-term costs and maximized investments in research administration

4)     Mitigate compliance risks

Huron has conducted similar reviews at higher education institutions across the country and will provide a fresh perspective on our operations. They have performed work for more than 90 of the top 100 research universities in the US and more than 50 of the world’s top 100 universities.  Huron is currently working with more than 50 clients on research administration related projects.

Undoubtedly, gathering input from stakeholders across campus will be critical to the success of this project. The Huron team will be on campus working with many of you to better understand the unique culture of CSU. The onsite interaction will help provide a holistic and comprehensive understanding of our current operations. 

It is our intent to be open and transparent throughout this process, and we will continue to update the community on our progress as we move forward. An open forum will soon be scheduled to facilitate campus input.  In the meantime, please send questions or concerns to vpr_research_information@mail.colostate.edu or to Alan Rudolph at Alan.Rudolph@colostate.edu.  We are excited to begin this process in the coming weeks, and appreciate your full support in making this a successful review of our operations.

As you all know, research is one of the core tenants of our mission at Colorado State University and ensuring we are properly equipped to continue to grow as a research institution over the next few years is a critical component to our success. The Office of the Vice President of Research is dedicated to partnering with faculty, staff, students, and outside investigators to ensure that research conducted at CSU is of the highest quality and scientific integrity, and embodies the spirit of the land-grant university that is our heritage.


Warm regards,




Register for the Richard Hatchett luncheon and seminar

Colorado State University students, faculty and staff are invited to hear a senior thought leader with the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority present about his agency’s success moving technologies from the lab to the marketplace.

Richard Hatchett, the chief medical officer and deputy director of BARDA, will speak during a noon luncheon on Wednesday, April 23 in Room D100 at the Infectious Disease Research Center at the CSU Foothills Campus.

BARDA is a relatively new agency reporting to the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. It supports the development and procurement of medical countermeasures against chemical, biological, radiological and nuclear threats, pandemic influenza and emerging infectious diseases. Hatchett’s talk “From Bench to Bedside: The Long and Winding Road” focuses BARDA’s model and successful track record of moving products to market. The Office of the Vice President of Research is sponsoring the free campus-wide event. Attendees must register before noon on Monday at http://vpr.colostate.edu/pages/Events_Programs.htm.

CSU Ventures Innovation Symposium is one week away

The 2014 CSU Ventures Innovation Symposium is only a week away on Friday, April 25th at 4pm to 7pm in the Scott Bioengineering Building at Colorado State University, located at the southwest corner of Meridian Ave. and W. Plum St. Fort Collins, CO

This is a great opportunity to network with colleagues, interact with representatives from Industry, and hear what it takes to be innovative with academic technologies.

Keynote speakers include

  • Susan James, PhD – Professor and Chair, Department of Mechanical Engineering, CSU
  • Cory Christensen, PhD – Group Leader, Principal Research Scientist, Dow AgroSciences

Registration is required


Hitting the MARC at CSU

We have an ever-increasing awareness of the consequences of emerging pathogens as well as our inability to respond to high consequence pathogens such as Ebola or antibiotic resistance bacteria (e.g. MRSA).   In the news of the day, we are experiencing a severe Ebola outbreak in Africa, the acknowledgement of an isolated hemorrhagic Lassa fever case in Minnesota, and the tracking of vectors associated with the Middle Eastern Respiratory syndrome (MERs) which is looking more like a species jump from Camels.  These rare seemingly infrequent events are seeing global attention, reminding us of our lack of preparedness.

Over a decade ago, these events were foretold in the creation of regional centers of excellence (COEs) created by NIH.  One of these resides here as the Rocky Mountain regional center of excellence and leveraged our significant assets in infectious disease as well as the close integration of federal laboratories partners such as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the National Wildlife Research Center (NWRC).  These programs were designed to contribute both fundamental understanding of pathogens and more importantly the ability to translate discoveries into useful countermeasures that could be implemented in the event of a new pathogen outbreak or an unusually virulent and noxious flu.

One of the intended outcomes of the investment in COEs was to create parallel manufacturing capabilities that would accelerate translation and production of needed countermeasures.  Very few of the centers realized this outcome.  Yet, I am very pleased to report that within our COE we have created BioPharmaceutical Manufacturing & Academic Resource Center (BioMARC). Of even greater significance is that we have just received FDA approval to manufacture a commercial product in the BioMARC facility fulfilling the original design of those who invested to increase the preparedness of our country.

The BioMARC approval not only signals a long standing commitment and investment in manufacturing but has achieved a standard of manufacturing that few universities have achieved.  The facility was just FDA approved to manufacture Alplisol, a tuberculin purified protein derivative under good manufacturing practices for commercial sale under sponsorship from a commercial partner.  This is a monumental undertaking and represents years of dedicated work by the staff at BioMARC and the IDRC.  There are many who should be recognized for their hard work and certainly under the direction of Rick Lyons and Dennis Pierro this would not have happened.  Many in the Office of the Vice President of Research, Infectious Disease Research Center, the Department of Microbiology, Immunology and Pathology, The College of Veterinary Medicine and Biomedical Sciences, The Research Integrity & Compliance Review Office and The Office of Sponsored Programs should be recognized for this outstanding achievement.  Big thanks to all.

The future is bright for this facility as we seek additional commercial partners seeking to produce medicines for the challenge we face in increasing our preparedness to infectious challenges of the day.

Way to hit the MARC!