University of North Dakota Faculty/Staff Newsletter

Faculty may be asked to fill out FDP faculty workload survey

The Federal Demonstration Partnership (FDP; thefdp.org), a cooperative initiative hosted by the National Academies, is conducting a national survey of federally-funded principal investigators (PIs) to explore the impact of federal regulations on the time faculty spend pursuing active research.

The University is an active member of FDP, and we have provided them with a list of our PIs on federal grants and contracts during the 2010-11 academic year.  The PIs may be contacted and asked to complete the web-based FDP Faculty Workload Survey. We want to encourage you to participate so that the FDP can obtain the firsthand input needed to work effectively with OMB and federal agencies to increase the efficiency of research administration and reduce the workload of PIs.

The FDP is comprised of 10 federal agencies and 119 institutional recipients of federal funds working together to reduce the administrative burdens associated with research grants and contracts. The FDP is a unique forum for individuals from universities and nonprofits to work collaboratively with federal agency officials to improve the national research enterprise.

The current study is a follow-up to the FDP 2005 Faculty Workload Survey, which provided estimates of the proportion of federally-funded research time spent on administrative workload compared to active research.  The 2011 Faculty Workload Survey will update these data to see whether the workload has changed and will extend the earlier survey findings by exploring specific areas of administrative workload as well as new sources of research workload.  The results of this study are critical as they will be a primary source for setting FDP priorities and developing initiatives to improve the research process.

Please be on the lookout starting the week of Jan. 23 for an email message inviting you to participate in the FDP Faculty Workload Survey.  We hope that you will choose to take the 15-30 minutes necessary to complete the survey and contribute to this national effort to streamline administrative processes in federally-funded research.

Please note that the IRB that reviewed and approved this survey has examined the survey methodology and survey instruments to ensure that all responses will be handled in a confidential manner, by a qualified survey company. The names of the participants will not be known to their university/institution or to the FDP.  The survey results will be published as aggregate data; no individual names or university/institution names will be associated with any responses. We hope these protections will allow you to respond candidly to the questions posed in the survey. If you have any questions about the survey, please feel free to contact either Barry Milavetz or David Schmidt.

~Phyllis E. Johnson, Vice President for Research & Economic Development