Research - Conducting Externally Funded Projects through UTCA

This policy outlines the procedure for faculty members to conduct their projects through the auspices of UTCA, even when the funding is provided by non-UTCA sources.

Advantages – Both faculty members and UTCA may benefit from this arrangement. Faculty members who conduct such projects through UTCA receive the following types of benefits:

  • The faculty member may receive help in the preparation of the project final report. Where appropriate, this can include peer review, editing, and publishing of the report.
  • The faculty member gains exposure through publicity associated with UTCA’s ongoing outreach efforts, like articles in periodicals and newspapers, Semi-Annual and Annual Reports, and final reports.
  • The faculty member’s work is listed on the UTCA website, including a two-page generic project description and the final report (where appropriate and allowed by the project sponsor). This provides instant access by potential collaborators and research partners.
  • In some cases, the project may qualify for matching funding (where qualified and approved by the UTCA Executive Committee).

The primary advantages of such projects for UTCA are the expansion of its network of qualified researchers and the increase in its portfolio of successful projects.

Criteria for Inclusion within UTCA’s Project Portfolio – Projects may be conducted through UTCA if they fall reasonably within UTCA’s theme area (Management and Safety of Transportation Systems) or in an established UTCA research area.

Procedure – PIs may elect to participate in this process with either proposals or funded projects, using the following steps:

  • Your project should fall within the UTCA theme area or in an established research area.
  • You should notify your campus UTCA Associate Director of your desire to conduct a project through UTCA. Forward a copy of your proposal (and the approval documents provided by your external funding agency, where appropriate).
  • Your Associate Director will check to see if the project is compatible with UTCA’s theme and programs.
  • If the project is accepted, the Associate Director notifies UTCA headquarters.
  • A distinct UTCA project number is created, the project is added to UTCA’s records, and the faculty member and Associate Director are notified.

Requirements of Such Projects:

  • Proposals should include a prominent statement saying, “This project is being conducted under the auspices of the University Transportation Center for Alabama.”
  • Once the project is authorized and funded by the external agency, it will be treated like other UTCA projects (except that it is not subject to some of the normal restrictions for UTCA projects, as listed below).
  • Publications and presentations resulting from the project should include an acknowledgement of UTCA’s role. The same statement as listed above is recommended (“This project is being conducted under the auspices of the University Transportation Center for Alabama.”)
  • If the project produces a final report, it will be published in UTCA format (unless the sponsor specifies otherwise).
  • Such projects are not subject to normal UTCA controls (budget changes, quarterly progress reports, etc.) However, the PI is expected to conduct the project in a way that brings credit to herself/himself, the host campus, and UTCA.