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Research and Innovation Committee

General purpose:  A Standing Committee of Academic Council which is responsible for bringing forward policy and to advise and consult on strategy to support the achievement of the University’s research and innovation Strategic Plan objectives.   The Committee is responsible for advising on the University’s framework for the evaluation and monitoring of research performance, including the University’s standing nationally and internationally.  It provides an important forum for debate and consultation on these and related matters.

The Committee liaises closely with other Standing Committees in areas of common interest to ensure policy coherence and is advised by the Academic Development and Standards Committee and by the Academic Council Graduate Studies Committee.

The Committee liaises closely with the University Leadership Team’s subcommittee on Research Innovation Strategy Impact (ULT-RISI) to ensure complementarity of research and innovation policy and strategic implementation.

The Committee shall undertake any other duties or tasks assigned to it by Academic Board or Academic Council from time to time.

Reports to:  Academic Board on matters concerning delegated authority and is advisory to Academic Council on policy matters within its remit. 

1. Strategy and Policy

To bring forward for initial consideration by Academic Board:
a) Proposals on policy to support the development of research and innovation, in pursuit of the University’s Strategic Plan objectives in these areas.
b) Mechanisms for fostering and enhancing the University's engagement with key external agencies concerned with research funding and development, nationally and internationally.
c) Advice and guidance on the financial and strategic implications for UCC of changes in externally funded research in Ireland, Europe and internationally, including emerging risks and options for action.
d) Advice and guidance for the development of the University’s framework and procedures for the evaluation of research capacity and the quality of research, and for the governance of research institutes and centres, at UCC.
e) Consider recommendations from the Academic Development and Standards Committee and by the Academic Council Graduate Studies Committee to promote and maintain high quality learning and teaching and graduate research, and to support the development of research to meet strategic objectives, including measures for recognising student and staff achievement in these areas.


2. Executive functions

Under delegated authority from Academic Board to:
a) Co-ordinate the University's response to national policy consultations in the areas of research and innovation.
c) Advise, guide and monitor processes of evaluation of UCC’s research performance and innovation arising from research performance, against the University’s key performance indicators, national and international rankings and best practice in these areas, and suggest actions as appropriate.
d) Keep under review the University’s key performance indicators in areas within its remit and recommend adjustment as necessary.

3. Oversight functions
a) Advisory oversight on the implementation of the research and innovation objectives of the University’s Strategic Plan, through ongoing communication and consultation with the University Leadership Team’s subcommittee on Research Innovation Strategy Impact (ULT-RISI).
b) Maintain oversight of Research Centres/Institutes’ research and innovation strategies, and advise on their overall complementarity with the UCC strategic plan, policies, and the UCC Futures framework.
c) Receive and consider an annual report from the VP Research and Innovation evaluating research and innovation activities undertaken by research centres/institutes; and outcomes from quality reviews where relevant; and to propose action as appropriate.
d) Maintain oversight of the effectiveness of UCC’s strategies, policies and frameworks for promoting and supporting research capacity at UCC and to advise as appropriate.
e) Maintain oversight of staff views and concerns in relation to research and innovation and represent and report these to Academic Council and Academic Board when necessary.

4. Other business as required
a) To submit to the Academic Board minutes from each meeting of the Committee and to report on specific matters as requested.
b) To advise Academic Board and Academic Council on such matters that the Board or Council may refer to the Committee from time to time.

Delegated authority
The Research and Innovation Committee retains the overall responsibilities defined in its terms of reference as approved by Academic Council. The Committee may establish sub-committees to enable it to fulfil its remit and to which it may delegate functions with the approval of Academic Council. The Committee may also establish working groups from time to time to assist in its work. Sub-Committees and working groups shall operate in accordance with the procedures set down in the University’s Committee Handbook.

Reserved Business
None approved by Academic Council.

Frequency of Meetings
The Committee shall meet up to 6 times per year or as directed by Academic Council.


Appointed by the President

Professor Luigina Ciolfi 

Deputy Chair
Appointed by the President

Professor John Morrissey  

Ex Officio: 


 Vice President for Research and Innovation

Professor John Cryan 

Dean of Doctoral Studies

 Dr Orla Lynch

Director of Research Support Services

Dr David O’Connell

Head of UCC innovation (or nominee)

Dr David Corkery 

UCC librarian

Ms Coral Black

SU President (or nominee)

Mr Colm Foley

Representative of Doctoral Students

Ms Patricia Flynn  

Representative of UCC Research Staff Association 


Representative of IT Support Services

Mr Barry O'Sulivan  

1 member from each College with functional responsibility in this area


Dr James Kapalo 


Professor Conor O'Mahony


Dr Gerard McGlacken


Professor Gerard O'Keeffe

4 members of Academic Council nominated by Academic Council 

nominated by Academic Council to represent the diversity of research and innovation at UCC (with consideration of gender, minority background, career stage and competency)


Professor John McInerney


Dr Eleni Tsalaporta 


Dr Monica O'Mullane 



Co-opted members

Up to 3 members (not restricted to AC members), with consideration of gender, minority background, career stage and competency, and approved by Academic Council.


Dr Jason Martin


Dr Emanuel Popovici



Committee Secretary
Provided by the Research Office

Ms Gillian Aughney 

Approved by Academic Council 19th January 2024

Ref:  Academic Secretariat, 19th January 2024


Academic Affairs and Governance

Gnothaí Acadúla agus Rialú