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Message From Leadership

Members of the Tufts Community,

Tufts is a university dedicated to producing the highest levels of research and scholarship (R&S).  R&S are core to our identity and mission–to learn, produce knowledge, and contribute to society–and are foundational to our commitment to being a student-centered research institution.

Securing our strengths and planning our future in R&S requires ideas and efforts from all parts of the University.  It also entails a deep understanding of Tufts’ capabilities, areas in which we can improve, and the opportunities and challenges we face.  Finally, it takes thoughtful planning to implement the vision for Tufts R&S in the years ahead.

We have asked Simin Nikbin Meydani, vice provost for research, to lead this R&S planning effort on behalf of the University.  We have asked her to consult widely and develop R&S priorities that Tufts should consider in making long-term decisions.

Strategic planning is not a routine or frequent undertaking. Ideally it is carried out periodically and looks several years into the future. Following on T10—the University-wide strategic plan approved in 2013—Tufts schools and centers have been conducting their own strategic planning using T10 as a guide. This Tufts R&S planning is intended to build on, not supplant, these school/center efforts, or to prescribe R&S priorities for them. Rather, we’re aiming at overarching, long-term, University-wide priorities that will support our schools and centers. We look forward to your full participation, suggestions, and innovative ideas as we embark on this journey.

Tony MonacoDavid Harris
 Anthony Monaco
David Harris
Provost and Senior Vice President

Spring 2018

When we began the Research and Scholarship Strategic Plan (RSSP) in 2017, we knew the effort would only succeed with broad and deep participation from across our community and a transparent process.  In 2017, extensive data gathering – including 95 one-on-one interviews, 16 focus groups consisting of 91 participants, and a survey distributed to 1700 faculty members with a 30 percent response rate – directed our focus in five Priority Areas for research and scholarship.

Our Steering Committee constituted five Priority Area Working Groups, from which twelve proposals for research and scholarship that Tufts is uniquely qualified to address, were developed.  Additionally, four Cross-Cutting Working Groups have been formed to address ways to enhance research and scholarship across all priority areas.

Our Steering and Executive Committees, and ultimately Tufts’ Board of Trustees, will identify and support those proposals which best:

  • Align with and complement Tufts’ T10 and School/Center strategic priorities
  • Safeguard our Carnegie rating as a “R1 - highest research activity” university
  • Build on Tufts’ existing strengths
  • Have potential for field-advancing innovation
  • Make a beneficial contribution to needs or opportunities of profound importance to large numbers of people and societies
  • Provide avenues for multi-disciplinary collaboration inside Tufts and beyond
  • Are likely to secure funding and other vital support
  • Engage students

We are excited about the work that has been done to get to this phase, and equally excited about the implementation phase which lies ahead – into 2018 and beyond.

All the best,

Simin Nikbin Meydani
Simin Nikbin Meydani
Vice Provost for Research