ARGIS: A Robust Single-Source, Web-Based Research Management System

Technology #31672

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Academic Research and Grants Information System
Categories
Researchers
Tammie McClellan
External Link (www.dist.ist.ucf.edu)
Robert Reed
Managed By
Andrea Adkins
Assistant Director 407.823.0138

Research, grants, database, software, research management, data cataloging, tracking, research automation, information workflow

UCF researchers have developed a customizable and scalable web-based, enterprise-level research administration system that meets the needs of all stakeholders, increases efficiency and lowers costs. The Academic Research & Grants Information System (ARGIS) gives a university’s faculty, staff and industry partners access to timely information about ongoing research and simplifies the application, administration and accounting process for project funding and technology transfer. ARGIS provides automated workflows, paperless review processes and on-demand reports, reducing the overhead costs of research administration. It also provides a secure and robust audit trail that is available in real-time.

Technical Details

Scalable, customizable and flexible, ARGIS consists of the following features:

  • Role-based security access control ensures the integrity and security of research data. An organization can create roles and define permissions using customized business rules that restrict the scope of a user’s access based on his or her “need to know.” A record-locking feature prevents editing by anyone other than the person who checks out a record, and ARGIS keeps an audit trail of data and proposal modifications.
  • Proposals and awards module and workflows enable a university to track the submission, review, approval, and post-award management of research proposals, awards, grants, and contract deliverables. All stakeholders, such as principal investigators/researchers (PIs), research administrators, college deans, department chairs, grant managers, and outside sponsors can easily upload and store documents as well as track the progress of research proposals. The online workflow starts when a researcher submits a proposal using standardized online forms and associated documents. ARGIS connects to an external authentication system (such as iThenticate) that scans and authenticates research proposals to ensure against plagiarism. The workflow continues through an electronic review process and the post-award administration of funds. An automated notification and alert system keeps reviewers on track. Reviewers can also create on-demand reports to view a project’s progress, including the state of deliverables, documents, balances, expenditures, revenues and payroll. Stakeholders can upload and store a large variety of documents and use the ARGIS search engine to look up research by subject, department, individual, sponsor, funding level, contract vehicle and other characteristics.
  • Agreements module stores all contractual arrangements (non-research) between the university and external agencies. Contracts such as a Confidential Disclosure Agreement (CDA), Memorandum of Understanding (MOU), Teaming Agreement, and Visiting Scientist Agreement can be linked to other resource types tracked in the system (for example, proposals, awards and licenses). ARGIS tracks all agreements based on the lead researcher/PI and enables various stakeholders to view agreements.
  • Hazardous materials module provides a web-based method for a PI to request the use of hazardous materials within a university. The module includes an electronic review and approval process of the hazardous materials submissions along with the sponsored and non-sponsored research associated with the request. With each hazardous materials submission, ARGIS uses university-set business rules to dynamically determine which individuals to include in a review. Reports are available for PIs /lead researchers to review their hazardous materials protocols.
  • Reports and searching capabilities enable real-time reportingof accounts and contracts using more than 30 pre-built reports with parameter options for proposals and awards, sponsors and funders, investigators, deliverables, general information and statistics.
  • Tasks module enables research administrators to log activity and create reminders for proposals, awards, agreements and other items. Using business rules, ARGIS can create tasks automatically, reducing the need for manual entry. Proposal managers, contract and grant managers, compliance coordinators, and accountants can create and track various tasks related to a project.
  • Technology transfer module enables a university to track and manage its national and international patent, copyright or trademark filings made to the United States Patent and Trademark Office (USPTO) for new technology and intellectual property. The module also supports licensing and commercialization activities, such as creating invoices, tracking revenue, and reimbursing expenses for all technologies that make up the “portfolio” of a license. Stakeholders can view and track data for patents, licenses, assignments and royalties.
  • Conflict of interest and commitment module provides a method for creating and maintaining online disclosures required by a university. The module helps to ensure that employees or individuals in positions of trust who design, conduct, and report a university’s research have no conflicts between their primary university obligations and their outside activities, interests and commitments. The online disclosure form is customizable, so that it can conform to federal guidelines, state statutes, educational board policies and a university’s own COI requirements. The form can provide links to available training, pop-up word definitions and added information about various questions on the form. Each question on the form can support multiple responses. Workflows automate the review process by regulators and administrators who check the form for compliance, ethics and risks. The module operates in ARGIS or as a standalone system.
  • Integration with external systems enables stakeholders to monitor and manage the flow of funding and expenses through finance and accounting systems such as PeopleSoft.

Benefits

  • Web-based and accessible anytime, anywhere
  • Scalable, customizable, easy to implement
  • Seamlessly integrates with external systems
  • Enables immediate and accurate performance measurement and gap identification
  • Supports all stakeholders, keeping everyone informed of research and funding status

Applications

  • Public and private university research organizations

Copyright and Trademark information

Copyright registration: TXu 1-068-781, Trademark registration: 3,249,179

Additional Technology: 31685