In early August, the National Council of University Research Administrators and Eurasia Foundation swung wide the doors of the Washington Hilton’s Presidential Suite for a celebration of their new partnership linking US and Russian institutions of higher education. At this special reception held during NCURA’s Annual Conference, nearly 60 US university representatives gathered to welcome eight Russian research administrators participating in the new Research Administration Initiative (RAI).
The RAI is connecting administrators from both countries who share a commitment to expanding their universities’ research capabilities and at the same time forming a combined network of research partners. In August, Eurasia Foundation brought seven Russian research administrators to the United States as participants in the RAI project.
NCURA President Robert Andresen enthusiastically welcomed the new partnership’s ambitious endeavors, while EF President Horton Beebe-Center expressed gratitude to NCURA and the universities hosting their Russian colleagues. President Beebe-Center noted the warm welcome extended to the fellows by their host universities, and emphasized the importance of continued collaboration and expansion in the field of university research administration.
The following day, the Russian RAI fellows began their exchange visits at various US universities, including Case Western, University of Rochester, MIT, Johns Hopkins University, and University of North Carolina Wilmington.
The RAI will continue in the fall with a November visit of NCURA officials to Russia for a conference and reunion of the RAI fellows. In 2017, NCURA will send additional US fellows on reciprocal exchange visits to Russian universities.
Robust research administration strengthens institutions of higher education by enhancing the execution, financing, and maintenance of university research projects and programs. Well-developed research administration programs provide for an institution’s sustainability and consistency in academic output by bolstering financial support and ensuring institutional compliance. The RAI experts from both Russia and the United States will explore each other’s systems of facilitating academic research and will pave the way for continued collaboration between academic institutions internationally.