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June 2021 Issue

– Jump ahead with our Table of Contents –

From Vice President David Norton

As we move toward the fall semester, with the impacts of the pandemic diminishing daily, our optimism for UF and the research enterprise is palpable. Laboratories are returning to normal operations, the AI initiative is in full swing, and new faculty and students are arriving on campus. UF is well positioned to accelerate its rise to excellence.
As with any new academic year, there are opportunities and challenges to be addressed, as well as existing obligations that must be fulfilled. To that end, we need to let you know about some new requirements, as well as remind you of existing obligations that are growing in importance.
 

New State Requirements for Researchers and Universities


The State of Florida recently enacted a foreign influence law, HB7017, which imposes new requirements on the university and its researchers. This legislation, passed unanimously in both the House and Senate, seeks to identify and prevent undue foreign influence on Florida universities. Key provisions of the legislation include:
  • Restrictions on Florida universities from participating in certain types of agreements with or accepting grants from China, Russia, Iran, North Korea, Cuba, Venezuela or Syria.
  • Reporting requirements for any contract, gift, grant or donation of money or property received from a foreign source with a value of $50,000 or more during the fiscal year.
  • Disclosure requirements of past employment, education, publications and affiliations for all foreign individuals, including students, seeking a paid or unpaid research-related position, with required review and screening of this information by the university research integrity office prior to consideration for a research position.
  • Requirement that all international travel be reviewed and approved by the university research integrity office prior to the travel occurring.
The university is developing a plan that will satisfy these requirements. We have created a Foreign Influence and Disclosure Task Force, chaired by the Vice President for Research, that is charged with identifying and implementing system and resource solutions to ensure compliance with state and federal regulations, while minimizing the impact to, and administrative burden on, colleges, departments and researchers. UF Research will provide the community with regular updates about the Task Force’s progress on the UF Research website and through regular universitywide communications.
 

Disclosure Requirements for Current UF Employees


As a reminder, researchers must continue to adhere to the following university and federal requirements, particularly as they relate to international engagements.

Disclose All Outside Activities to the university: All UF employees must disclose to the university all outside financial relationships and professional activities, whether compensated or uncompensated. All outside activities must be approved in advance. In addition to UF policy, there are also State of Florida laws requiring full disclosure. For more information on how and what to disclose, visit https://coi.ufl.edu/.

Disclose Other Support to federal agencies per agency-specific instructions. Federally funded UF researchers must disclose all financial support received from any foreign entity that supports ongoing or proposed research projects for which they will provide effort or oversight. This includes financial support they receive from a foreign government, university or other legal entity outside the U.S., unpaid researchers in their lab, and in-kind support such as equipment and samples. Researchers must also ensure that the bio-sketch submitted within proposals is accurate and complete, including all affiliations. The University of Florida continues to fully support and encourage international research, collaboration and scholarship, as well as supporting our valued international community of students, faculty and staff. Please be patient as we develop our plan to address the new state requirements. If you have any questions related to this memo, the Task Force, or international engagements, visit the International Engagements website or contact Cassandra Farley, associate director, UF Research Integrity, Security and Compliance (cfarley@ufl.edu).
 

Staff Spotlight

Karl LaPan


Director of Innovation Services, UF Innovate

UF Innovate is pleased to welcome Karl R. LaPan as the incoming director of incubation services. He succeeds Mark S. Long, who is retiring. LaPan comes to the position with more than 20 years of experience in business incubation.

“There are very few people in the country with the experience to fill Mark’s shoes,” said Jim O’Connell, assistant vice president of technology commercialization at the University of Florida. “When you’ve had a leader who has put our incubators on the map internationally – for good reasons – and you know the field of candidates to replace him is limited, I am thrilled to have someone of Karl’s caliber and experience join our team. I am confident he will step into the role and keep building on Mark’s successes.”

In his role as director, LaPan leads both of UF Innovate’s award-winning incubators, Sid Martin Biotech in Alachua and The Hub, a mixed-use incubator, in the Gainesville Innovation District, located between campus and downtown Gainesville. The facilities together offer 150,000 square feet of labs, office space, conference rooms, and scientific equipment, and are home to more than 60 startup and growth companies.

UF’s two incubators provide a place and a program, coaching and connections for young companies to give them the best chance for ongoing success. Startups that have resided at the incubators have generated more than $10 billion in investments and created nearly 8,000 jobs, most in the local economy. The incubators play a crucial role in Alachua’s and Gainesville’s innovation landscapes, and the director is integral to their success.

“The incubation industry is a small community, and it is very difficult to find people with extensive experience in entrepreneurial education, marketing, mentoring, and other facets of startup development,” said Long, who started at UF in 2014. “I am personally thrilled to welcome Karl LaPan to the UF Innovate community. I know he can take UF Innovate | Incubation Services to newer and greater heights, continuing the legacy of global award-winning programs established over the past several years.”

LaPan has served as president and CEO of the NIIC, a non-profit entrepreneurial support organization in Fort Wayne, Indiana, since its inception in 2000. Like UF Innovate’s incubators, the NIIC supports entrepreneurs as they plan, launch, and grow successful business ventures so companies can “move ideas into action.”

Under LaPan’s direction, entrepreneurs through the NIIC have launched 499 products, applied for 196 patents (most have been granted), and created 2,351 jobs. Companies have attracted more than $1 million in grants and capital. The International Business Incubator Association awarded the NIIC Mixed-Use Entrepreneur Center of the Year and the Dinah Adkins Award in 2020.  Entrepreneur Magazine named the NIIC one of the five best “under the radar” incubators in the United States.

The NIIC established a Women’s Entrepreneurial Opportunity Center to serve women business owners more effectively. It built a portfolio of inclusive support grants to give underrepresented groups greater access to entrepreneurial services, and it launched a Kiva hub in collaboration with the City of Fort Wayne and two other organizations to fund inclusive and diverse entrepreneurs in Northeast Indiana.

“This is an exciting time for me to join the UF Innovate team and lead Incubation Services,” said LaPan. “With a team of talented incubation professionals at two world-class incubation facilities, a vibrant Gainesville Innovation District and a growing entrepreneurial ecosystem in Alachua, we are poised to ‘build, drive, and support the spirit of entrepreneurship’ so our companies can ‘feed, fuel, and heal the world.’ Combine that with UF’s world-leading resources to move promising research discoveries from the lab to the market, and we’re on our way to being a top-energized tech community in the Southeast.”

Prior to his work at the NIIC, he was president and CEO of NBS Imaging Systems, Inc., an advanced biometrics identification company in Fort Wayne.

RCR Training: 2021 Summer Seminar Series

This summer, UF Research Integrity, in collaboration with RCR on Campus, will once again host a summer seminar series on Research Integrity and the Responsible Conduct of Research (RCR). The series will cover a wide variety of topics including the research lifecycle, research misconduct, peer review, as well as publishing and authorship. We will also have several new offerings on topics such as Data Ethics for Trustworthy A.I., the Effects of Culture on the Research Lab Dynamics and Study Design and others. Please visit our website for the full list of seminars and registration information. 

Data Ethics for Trustworthy A.I.
June 28th, 2 - 3 p.m.

Reproducibility & Replicability
June 29th, 2 - 3 p.m.

Introduction to Research Metrics and Impact
June 30, 1 - 3 p.m.

IRB & Informed Consent
July 1st, 2- 3 p.m.

Export Control Overview
July 8th, 2 - 3 p.m.

Budgeting Basics for Research Proposals
July 12th, 1 p.m. - 2 p.m.

Predatory Journals
July 14th, 1 - 2:30 p.m.

Putting it All Together
July 15th, 2 - 3 p.m.

CV and Biosketch Truthfulness
July 21st, 1 - 2:30 p.m.

Research Development Spotlight

The Office for Global Research Engagement is pleased to announce two funding opportunities for junior faculty and doctoral students.  
1. The Global Fellows Program provides $5,000 seed funding to junior faculty for international research. Learn more about the program on Thursday, September 16 at 12 p.m. (Large Conference Room, International Center – the Hub) 
2. Research Abroad for Doctoral Students (RADS) provides funding for travel and travel related expenses for doctoral students to travel abroad to collect data or to access resources not available on campus at partner institutions. Learn more about RADs at one of the two information sessions, on Friday, September 10 at 10 a.m. and Friday, September 24 at 2 p.m. For more information, contact Claire Anumba

Admin Corner

Effective May 25, 2021, NIH requires that all financial and in-kind support for any research that UF key personnel perform whether that is performed as part of their UF appointment, an outside activity, as consulting or as part of any other appointment or access they have, be disclosed in other support. UF will be announcing further guidance regarding the changes to Other Support and the Biosketch outlined below as information becomes available. To assist the UF community with these changes, DSP has posted Other Support FAQs on our webpage. If you are unsure about whether to disclose something in your other support, please reach out to DSP at ufproposals@ufl.edu.

Disclosing Activities as Other Support

NIH requires senior/key personnel to disclose all resources made available to them in support of or related to all of their research endeavors, regardless of whether or not they have monetary value and regardless of the performance site of the research. Even if the researcher performs the activity outside of the researcher’s UF appointment period (e.g., a nine-month faculty member conducts the activity during the summer months or as part of activities for a start-up company) or at a location other than UF, the researcher must disclose the activity. The required NIH Other Support format can be found here.

New! For Other Support submissions that include foreign activities and resources for which the investigator has an appointment and/or employment with a foreign institution, investigators are required to attach all contracts, grants or other appointment agreements as supporting documentation. If the documents are not in English, recipients must provide translated copies. Note that researchers must provide any translations of any agreements on which they are a signatory. This supporting documentation must be included with the Other Support format page and flattened into a single PDF.

New! Immediate notification of undisclosed Other Support. When a PI or other senior/key personnel on an active NIH grant failed to disclose Other Support information in the Just-in-Time or the RPPR, as applicable, UF must submit updated Other Support to the NIH as soon as it becomes known. If you have an undisclosed international engagement, contact DSP immediately so that it is appropriately disclosed to NIH.

Examples of Other Support include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Resources and/or financial support from all foreign and domestic entities that are available to the researcher. This includes but is not limited to:
    • Financial support for laboratory personnel (i.e. anyone working in your lab, including those who identify as “self-funded”)
    • Provision of high-value materials that are not freely available (e.g., biologics, chemical, model systems, technology, etc.)
  • New! Consulting agreements, when the researcher will be conducting research as part of the consulting activities. Non-research consulting activities are not Other Support.
  • New! In-kind contributions, e.g. office/laboratory space, equipment, supplies, or personnel (including students) supported by any entity other than UF. If the time commitment or dollar value of the in-kind contribution is not readily ascertainable, the researcher must provide reasonable estimates.
  • Note: Institutional resources, such as core facilities or shared equipment that are made broadly available, should not be included in Other Support, but rather listed under Facilities and Other Resources.

New! All Other Support submissions must now be electronically signed by the person for whom the report is submitted.  Any electronic signature must be affixed (physical signature scanned or affixed with digital writing device, Adobe signature, Docusign signature, etc.) and affixed before the submission is flattened into a single PDF.  An administrator pasting an image of signature onto the documents is not allowed. After signing ensure the document has been flattened (see instructions).

After the initial NIH award, researchers must disclose changes in Other Support in the annual research performance progress report (RPPR). Additionally, for post-award disclosures of Other Support, recipients must address any substantive changes by submitting a prior approval request to NIH in accordance with the NIHGPS section on “Administrative Requirements—Changes in Project and Budget—NIH Standard Terms of Award.”

Links:

Disclosing Activities in Your Biosketch

Researchers must include all positions, scientific appointments and affiliations from the last three years in their Biosketch.

New!  The 2021 NIH notice clarifies that within the ‘Positions, Scientific Appointments, and Honors’ section of the Biosketch, researchers must list all positions and scientific appointments both domestic and foreign, including affiliations with foreign entities or governments. This includes titled academic, professional, or institutional appointments whether or not remuneration is received, and whether full-time, part-time, or voluntary (including adjunct, visiting, or honorary).  Listing must be in reverse chronological order.

Disclosing Foreign Activities to NIH as Foreign Component

NIH defines “foreign component” as the performance of any significant scientific element or segment of a project outside of the U.S., either by UF (including any UF employee), by a subrecipient, or by a researcher employed by a foreign entity, whether or not grant funds are expended. There is a 2-part test for determining whether an activity meets the definition of foreign component: (1) whether a portion of the project will be conducted outside of the U.S. and (2) whether that portion of the project is significant. Some examples of activities that may be considered a significant element of the project include, but are not limited to:

  • Collaborations with investigators at a foreign site anticipated to result in co-authorship;
  • Use of facilities or instrumentation at a foreign site; or
  • Receipt of financial support or resources from a foreign entity.

As additional guidance becomes available, DSP will continue to update our webpage.

Helpful resources:

UF webpage on Disclosing Activities to NIH

NIH webpage on Other Support

NIH Other Support Instructions

NIH Other Support Sample

NIH FAQs

Around Campus

Black Voices in Research
Storytelling Event

The UF Clinical and Translational Science Institute premiered the second Black Voices in Research Storytelling Event on Juneteenth.

Four members of the UF Research community shared their experiences as Black professionals in biomedical sciences. Duane Mitchell, professor in the Department of Neurosurgery at the UF College of Medicine and Director of UF CTSI, led the speakers in an effort to elevate diverse and valued voices in our research community.

UF professor, associate chair named Dean of The Graduate School

A veteran professor and associate chair has been promoted to dean of UF’s Graduate School.

Nicole Stedman, Ph.D., associate chair of the Department of Agricultural Education and Communication in the College of Agricultural and Life Sciences succeeded Henry “Hank” Frierson after 14 years at UF.

“Dr. Stedman brings to the position solid institutional knowledge and fresh ideas that I know will propel The Graduate School to new levels of excellence,” said Joe Glover, UF Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs.

As dean, Stedman provides leadership in operating The Graduate School and all centrally administered aspects of graduate education, such as defining and implementing university-wide policies in graduate education; recruiting and retaining a diverse graduate student body; and advocating for graduate education. The position reports directly to the provost and senior vice president for academic affairs.

"I am so incredibly honored and humbled by the opportunity to serve the University of Florida as Dean of the Graduate School and Associate Provost," Stedman said. "I am looking forward to joining the Graduate School team and supporting all of our graduate students across our great campus. We are certainly positioned for advancing the University’s Drive to Five initiative and all the innovative endeavors that our graduate students and programs are part of at UF."

Stedman has been at UF since 2007 when she joined the faculty as an assistant professor. Prior to that, she was an assistant professor in the College of Agricultural and Life Sciences at Texas A&M University.

A native of New Smyrna Beach and a three-time UF alumna, Stedman holds a bachelor of science degree in family, youth and community sciences; a master of science degree in agricultural education and communication; and a doctorate also in agricultural education and communication with an emphasis in leadership education. Before completing her Ph.D., she worked with the Eighth Judicial Circuit Office of the State Attorney Project Payback as a program specialist, developing leadership curriculum for youth at risk.

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