APS 1008 - Procedures for the Establishment of Centers, Institutes, Laboratories and Bureaus

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Policy Profile

Policy Title: Procedures for the Establishment of Centers, Institutes, Laboratories and Bureaus
APS Number: 1008
Effective: February 1, 20121
Approved by: President Bruce D. Benson
Responsible University Officer: Vice President for Academic Affairs
Responsible Office: Office of the Vice President for Academic Affairs
Policy Contact: Office of the Vice President for Academic Affairs, 303-860-5623
Supersedes: October 1, 2006
Last Reviewed/Updated: February 1, 2012
Applies to: All campuses

Policy Snapshot

Brief Description:  To set forth policies and guidelines for the establishment and approval of centers, institutes, laboratories, and bureaus and to provide for the renaming of existing organizations.

I.  Introduction

The University of Colorado has a wide variety of centers, institutes, laboratories, and bureaus. These entities may be single or multi-disciplinary in scope and generally combine education, research and creative work, and leadership and service activities, including patient care at the Anschutz Medical Campus. These units represent a valuable resource that expands opportunities for student learning and for faculty research and leadership and service. The purpose of this administrative policy statement is to set forth policies and guidelines for the establishment and approval of these entities, and to provide for the renaming of existing organizations, if appropriate, as determined by campus administrations. These policies do not apply to campus administrative units that provide support services to faculty and students (such as a "Media Center" or a "Counseling Center"), but rather to those units that are engaged more directly in instruction, research and creative work, and/or leadership and service.

II.  Policy Statement

  1. Approval of New Organizations
     
    1. Faculty members proposing to create a new institute, center, laboratory, or bureau first develop a program plan for the proposed organization. The program plan describes the purpose and proposed administrative and fiscal structure of the organization and follows the general format provided in Attachment A.
       
    2. The program plan will be reviewed and approved by the appropriate campus or multi-campus administrative officers prior to submission to the approval authority for review and approval. Additionally, an assessment of potential university liabilities by the campus legal counsel must accompany the request for initial approval.
      1. Units, whether they be an institute, center, laboratory or bureau, that are organized within departments, institutes, schools/colleges or between schools/colleges on the same campus must be recommended by the appropriate dean(s)/director and approved by the campus chancellor. An inventory of these units shall be maintained by the provost’s office on each campus and be reported annually to the Vice President for Academic Affairs.
      2. Units, whether they be institutes or centers, that are organized as cooperative programs between campuses must be recommended by the appropriate chancellors and approved by the president.
      3. All institutes must be approved by the president and by the Board of Regents, as must all centers, laboratories and bureaus that included formal affiliation agreements with extramural agencies or organizations.
         
    3. Approval for each new unit will be for an initial period of five to seven years within the context of a normally scheduled program review of the parent unit. At the end of this initial period, review and/or reauthorization for centers, laboratories, and bureaus may take place in accordance with the normally scheduled program review of the parent unit, which occurs once every five to seven years. In the case of institutes, review and reauthorization will occur on a schedule to be determined by the designated officer, not to exceed every seven years. Subsequent review and reauthorizations will occur on a schedule to be determined by the parent unit, not to exceed every seven years.
       
    4. Revenue and expenditure budgets for centers, institutes, laboratories and bureaus must be reviewed by the campus budget officer prior to submission for approval. For multi-campus units, this review will be conducted by the budget officer on each campus involved. The financial integrity of the unit will be the responsibility of the officer of the relevant parent unit (e.g., department head, dean, provost, chancellor, etc.). All budgetary deficits must be eliminated by the end of each fiscal year. All proposals for new units must identify an individual who is responsible for the oversight of the unit's budget. Any unit requiring an annual budget of $2 million or more must designate an individual within its organizational structure whose responsibility is the management of the unit's financial operations.
       
  2.  Reauthorization of Organizations
     
    1. Review criteria for reauthorization should include, but not be limited to: 1) success in the accomplishment of the unit's role and mission and its specific goals; 2) maintenance of fiscal solvency; and 3) the unit's support of the mission of its parent unit (department, school, campus, etc.). Additional criteria may be required by the campus parent units.
       
  3. Reauthorization Approval
     
    1. Authority for reauthorization of centers, laboratories and bureaus rests with the campus chancellor.
    2. Reauthorization of institutes, cooperative programs between campuses, and centers, laboratories and bureaus that include formal affiliation agreements with extramural agencies or organizations must be approved by the chancellor, unless there have been significant changes in the mission, formal affiliation agreement, or financial obligations, in which case the reauthorization must be approved by the president.

III.  Other Provisions

  1. Faculty at various ranks (including adjoint faculty and other special faculty such as research associates) may participate in the activities of institutes, centers, laboratories and bureaus in accordance with the by-laws of the organization. Regular tenure-track faculty will hold their appointment in their primary unit. In accordance with regent policy, non-tenure-track faculty (specialty track, adjoint, adjunct, research faculty, etc.) will be on limited or indeterminate appointments based upon available funding and satisfactory performance.
     
  2. Written documentation of the fiscal control provisions (i.e., accounting procedures, use of general funds, terms and conditions of expenditure and authorization, agreements for indirect cost recovery, etc.) will be required for each organization.
     
  3. Each institute and units that include formal affiliation agreements with extramural organizations will be subject to separate, periodic program review. Centers, laboratories and bureaus may be reviewed in the context of the sponsoring department or other academic or research unit.
     
  4. Campus units may request a change in designation for existing institutes, centers, laboratories and bureaus based on new definitions. Such requests will include a rationale for the proposed change in designation and will be reviewed and approved by the appropriate approval authority as if it were a newly created organization. Name changes involving the designation of institutes or units that include formal affiliation agreements with extramural agencies or organizations must also be approved by the Board of Regents. Name changes involving all other organizations must be approved by the chancellor.
     
  5. In accordance with Regent Policy 2-K, the chancellor (by presidential delegation) approves any appointment of directors and other chief administrative officers of institutes, units that are organized between campuses, or units that include formal affiliation agreements with extramural organizations.
     
  6. Individual campuses may develop additional procedures for the establishment, administration, and governance of centers, institutes, laboratories and bureaus. Such additional procedures must be consistent with the guidelines of the administrative policy statement. Nothing in these guidelines precludes the discontinuing of institutes, centers, laboratories or bureaus at any time at the discretion of the campus chancellor.

IV.  Definitions

  1. INSTITUTES - An institute is defined as a single or multi-disciplinary unit which is organized to conduct education, research and creative work, and/or leadership and service activities. Such entities are characterized by organizational permanency, programmatic autonomy, a broad program of study, and an annual operating budget that is fiscally independent of other academic units. They are expected to have substantial external funding (typically over $1 million/year), commitments for associated faculty lines, evidence of long-term sustainability, a program of research training, and substantial infrastructure. Faculty and research/teaching staff in institutes usually participate in interdisciplinary graduate/undergraduate education programs. Institutes report to the campus chief academic officer or their designee and go through rigorous program review similar to that for academic departments.
  2. CENTERS - A center is defined as a single or multi-disciplinary unit which is organized to conduct education, research and creative work, and/or leadership and service activities. Such entities are characterized by less programmatic autonomy and less independence relative to institutes. Centers are typically organized around the investigation of a fairly specific theme, issue, project, or policy topic but often encompass interdisciplinary work spanning a number of academic fields. The lifetime of a center is often limited by the time and financial commitment to completing the particular project. Centers typically reside in departments, institutes, and/or colleges and report to department chairs, institute directors, or academic deans.
  3. LABORATORIES AND BUREAUS - Laboratories and bureaus are defined as single or multi-disciplinary entities whose primary functions are research and/or leadership and service. Laboratories and bureaus typically reside in departments and/or colleges and report to department chairs or academic deans.
  4. FORMAL AFFILIATION AGREEMENTS - Formal affiliation agreements are defined as contractual arrangements between a unit of the university and an extramural agency or organization for the purpose of joint activities toward mutual objectives. Such agreements may include, but not be limited to, shared facilities and/or equipment, joint personnel appointments, joint budgetary contributions, and cooperative administrative structures. The mere receipt of extramural funding from outside agencies (federal or otherwise) in the form of grants is excluded from this definition. In addition, agreements between the university and industrial affiliates, associates, sponsors or similar entities involving intellectual property rights shall not be included in the definition of formal affiliation agreements.

V.  History

    • Initial policy effective February 28, 1984
    • Revised July 1, 1993
    • Revised July 1, 1999
    • Revised October 1, 2006
    • Revised February 1, 2012
    • The term “service” was replaced with the term “leadership and service” effective April 30, 2014 per resolution of the CU Board of Regents.

Attachment A

Program Plan Format for Centers, Institutes, Laboratories and Bureau

  1. Statement of General Purpose of the Unit
    • Disciplines typically involved
    • Areas of research and leadership and service
  2. Statement of Congruence with Role and Mission of:
    • Campus
    • Parent Unit (Department, School/College)
       
  3. Description of Institutional Capability for Implementing the Unit
     
  4. Description of Administrative Structure of the Unit and Reporting Relationships (including fiscal officer)
     
  5. By-Laws of the Unit
    • Membership procedures, rights, privileges and responsibilities
    • Governance
    • Appointment of Director
    • Provisions for changing by-laws
       
  6. Resource Implications (Business Plan)
    • 5 year revenue estimate and source of funds
    • 5 year expenditure budget
    • 5 year cash flow
  • 1. The term “service” was replaced with the term “leadership and service” effective April 30, 2014 per resolution of the CU Board of Regents.