The OVCR is committed to a fair and transparent internal selections program.
Critical elements of an effective internal selections program include: communication of opportunities and eligibility; selection committee formation; internal application adjudication and candidate(s) selection; and candidate mentoring. The aims are to: (1) Assure clarity, consistency, transparency, and trust in the process; (2) Effective communication to both the candidates and the selection committee regarding the goals of the funders and characteristics of previous winners; and (3) Improve the success rate of Washington University candidates.
Committees and key coordinating representatives are convened by the Vice Chancellor for Research (VCR) to review internal candidates and select nominees. The largest committee, the New Investigator Awards Review Committee, is led by Professors Susan K. Dutcher (Co-Chair), PhD, Professor of Genetics, School of Medicine and Elizabeth Haswell (Co-Chair), PhD, Associate Professor of Biology and HHMI-Simons Faculty Scholar, School of Arts and Sciences.
Intake and Dissemination
The intake process for the University’s proposal invitations has been streamlined. All invitations should be routed to the Vice Chancellor for Research. The key objectives of the streamlined intake process include:
- Maximize faculty awareness of and access to all research funding opportunities on both campuses through improved communication and marketing
- Establish a single website where all information and announcements are available to all faculty
- Preserve a time‐line advantageous to the eventual nominee
University‐wide information on internal selections programs reside at https://wustl.edu/faculty-staff/internal-selections. The coordinating administrator for the OVCR is Catherine Determan in the Office of Sponsored Research Services. Sensitive foundation‐specific information and advice from previous awardees advantageous to WUSTL faculty, requires WUSTL Key login. The OVCR and A&D are exploring improvements to further streamline the portal and information provided to the WUSTL research community.
Review and Selection Process
Key objectives of the selection process for Internal Selections include:
- Ensure that adjudication of limited internal selection programs is representative across Schools and disciplines, equitable, bias‐free, and selects the most qualified candidates with the greatest likelihood of competitive success
- Implement transparent, quality, accountable review with vigorous discussion whenever possible
- Enlist past winners to assist in reviewing
The OVCR is committed to supporting the faculty, both as applicants and selection committee members, throughout the process, in conjunction with the Office of Corporate and Foundation Relations in Alumni & Development Programs, an invaluable partner whose staff are recognized experts on foundations and their programs.
OVCR and Alumni and Development have worked together to provide a single, integrated process to support WUSTL internal selections. This partnership includes all campuses, all research domains and schools, and both Danforth and Medical School Alumni and Development (A&D) staff, and operationally spans the spectrum from information intake, identification, notification, dissemination, marketing and communication, adjudication, and mentoring.
Foundation opportunities and invitations are often based on the critical relationships between WUSTL and the foundations. Knowledge of the “unwritten rules and cultures” of foundations is often a paramount factor in WUSTL being competitive for the awards.
The creation, cultivation, and stewardship of foundation relationships, and the generation, storage and dissemination of feedback from previous WUSTL applicants and scientific reviewers, is the expertise of Alumni and Development, Corporate/Foundation Relations. They will continue to contribute this knowledge for the benefit of WUSTL applicants.