Research Infrastructure Investments from the Research Development Fund
At the conclusion of each application review cycle, applications are approved by the RDF-Management Committee and participating Deans and Administrators will be listed here and publicized broadly to the Texas A&M research community.
As announced at the July 8, 2015 CPI meeting by Dr. Glen A. Laine, Vice President for Research at Texas A&M University:
The first call for applications resulted in 24 applications submitted May 8, 2015, that requested a total of $45 million, and represented 170 researchers as lead and/or team members from 13 colleges and over 135 “units.” Of the 24 applications, the RDF will be used to support 2, and additional funds will address 2 other requests.
Applications were reviewed by the RDF-Advisory Committee (AC) who submitted recommendations for consideration by the Management Committee, Deans, Directors, and Executive Oversight Committee.
The outcome of the discussions resulted in two projects funded from RDF, and two additional investments that utilized separate funds. In addition, the application process revealed several areas where infrastructure improvements would enhance Texas A&M research efforts. The Advisory Committee provided constructive summary comments to all remaining proposal authors. The AC found the interactive discussions with the MC to be productive, and anticipates that the initial outcome of the RDF process will quickly make a positive impact on research infrastructure.
The following projects were selected for the first round of infrastructure investment from the RDF for the Spring 2015 application cycle:
IMAC: AN INTEGRATED METABOLOMICS ANALYSIS CORE
Colleges/Agencies: Engineering, Agriculture and Life Sciences, Medicine, Veterinary Medicine, Science, AgriLife Research, Institute of Biosciences & Technology
This project leverages existing expertise to establish metabolomics capacity and core resources for a broad range of investigators at Texas A&M, and the demonstrated institutional support is expected to enhance re-submission of external funding requests.
TEXAS WATER OBSERVATORY (TWO): CAPACITY BUILDING IN BRAZOS CORRIDOR
Colleges: Agriculture & Life Sciences, Geosciences, Engineering
This project will expand resources to facilitate water-related research by investigators in multiple disciplines, and is expected to position Texas A&M in a key leadership role in these areas.
In addition, an application to purchase a helium liquefier and a system to recover helium gas to meet the liquid helium needs of TAMU users was recognized as an immediate campus need that should be supported by other funds identified by the Vice President for Research (VPR).
Finally, the proposals submitted in the first round provided evidence of widespread campus research infrastructure needs. The AC also noted important, overlapping themes of core facility and research infrastructure needs that were present in multiple proposals. The AC recommended that efforts be initiated to engage researchers in discussion about these needs, especially in the areas of mass spectrometry, imaging, and genome sequencing. To this end, the VPR committed to additional short term investment in mass spec support in response to one of the submitted proposals. It is anticipated that open discussions related to these and other infrastructure topics will occur during the coming year, and investigator participation is encouraged.