Most universities have a strategic plan that sets goals for the institution, including its research enterprise. This chapter discusses the development and implementation of a strategic plan’s research component. The plan should consistently emphasize the importance of research to campus academics. The core of the research plan addresses specific goals. Many universities set numerical goals such as increasing research expenditures by a certain amount. Consensus in this regard among the various constituencies comes fairly easily, because specific academic programs are not singled out. Another form of specificity identifies high-priority areas. This can be an extremely difficult planning section to prepare because of its implications for future resource allocations. Guidelines for identifying priorities are presented, with an emphasis on broad consultation to ensure significant “buy-in”. Strategic plan implementation can pose challenges. In the context of faculty hiring, the plan often succumbs to opportunism: hire the best person available regardless of strategic priorities.
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