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Research Committee Terms of Reference

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Section 1 - Introduction


(1) The Research Committee guides the Academic Board and the College community in strategy, policy and the approach to research activity in the College.

Status of the Research Committee 

(2) The Research Committee is a subcommittee of the Academic Board.

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Section 2 - Composition and Membership

(3) The composition and membership of the Research Committee is as follows:

  1. Ex Officio Members
    1. Director of Research
    2. Academic Dean
    3. Digital Librarian
  2. Chairperson
    1. The Director of Research is the ex officio chairperson.
  3. Vice Chairperson
    1. The Research Committee elects a vice chairperson from amongst its members who shall act as vice chairperson for a two-year period.
  4. External Members/Appointed Members
    1. One external member appointed by the Academic Board
    2. One member of research-active Faculty per programme, appointed by the Director of Research
    3. One member of research-active staff per department, where appropriate, appointed by the Director of Research
    4. One student representative per programme, appointed by the Research Committee
  5. Elected Members
    1. Six research-active Adjunct Faculty representatives, elected from Adjunct Faculty.
  6. Co-Opted Members
    1. The Research Committee may co-opt a member of the College or an external party to the committee for a period of one year, where such a co-option assists in the discharge of the responsibilities of the Board.
    2. Normally, a maximum of two persons may be co-opted to the Committee at any one point in time.
  7. In Attendance - By Invitation
    1. The Chairperson may invite an external party deemed relevant to the business of a meeting.
  8. In Attendance – Secretarial
    1. A member of administrative staff is invited by the Chairperson to act as Secretary to the Research Committee.
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Section 3 - Terms of Reference

Part A - Functions and Responsibilities of the Research Committee

(4) The Research Committee:

  1. Reviews College policies, procedures, strategies and resources in relation to research and recommends changes and executes development on behalf of the Academic Board.
  2. Advises the Academic Board on the management of College research activity.
  3. Promotes excellence and development in research in the College 
  4. Considers and makes recommendations on issues relating to research.
  5. Liaises with the Ethics Committee on the monitoring and review of research activity 
  6. Oversees the analysis and benchmarking of research activity and impact

Part B - Meetings

Nature of Meetings

(5) Committee meetings may take place face-to-face, by telephone, videoconference or other electronic means. 

(6) Committee members are required to fully prepare for each meeting, read the documentation in advance, and make every reasonable effort to attend each meeting.

Frequency of Meetings

(7) Committee meetings are held at least four times per year - normally, once per quarter before a meeting of the Academic Board.

(8) The Committee determines its meeting schedule annually, in advance, and meets as scheduled.


(9) The quorum for a committee meeting is 50% of the membership, plus one. 

(10) Every reasonable effort should be made to ensure the quorum includes at least one representative of the student body. 

(11) Where a loss of quorum is identified, the meeting may be adjourned until a time the Chairperson determines, but need not necessarily be adjourned. 


(12) Decisions are normally made by consensus, but in the absence of consensus by open vote. 

(13) Where there is a tied vote, the Chairperson has the casting vote.

(14) Decisions may be made either at a duly called and constituted meeting or by a resolution in writing to all members which is approved in writing by at least a quorum of members.

(15) Where any voting member could be perceived to have a conflict of interest in relation to the matter being considered, they will be recused from the decision-making process.

(16) Any matters for decision considered when the meeting is inquorate must be subsequently ratified at the next Committee meeting before those decisions can be actioned.

(17) All decisions must be formally recorded. In the absence of a formal record, any apparent decision shall be deemed null and void.

Part C - Ensuring Effective Practice

Agenda and Minutes

(18) Agendas and associated documentation are distributed at least five working days before the meeting. 

(19) Members are notified of the location and availability of material. 

(20) Only with the Chairperson’s permission are late papers or the tabling of papers accepted. 

(21) All papers must be submitted to the Secretary by the specified submission deadline.

(22) Board records shall be retained by the Secretary.

(23) Minutes are to be prepared of each meeting. 

(24) The Chairperson reviews the draft minutes and matters arising, after which, the secretary circulates the documents to all committee members and includes them in the agenda papers for the next meeting.

Annual Work Plan

(25) An annual work plan is drawn up and agreed.

Access to Resources

(26) All members, both internal and external, are given access to all resources and artefacts needed to fulfil their duties as members.

Part D - Evaluation and Review

Review by the Academic Board

(27) The Research Committee submits an annual report on its activity to the Academic Board.

(28) The Research Committee is reviewed by the Academic Board on its performance against these terms of reference every three years.

Review of the Terms of Reference

(29) The Chairperson reviews these terms of reference every two years in conjunction with the Academic Board and amends as appropriate. 

(30) Any amendments are subject to ratification by the Academic Board.