Monthly Update – January 2022

All students in on-campus programs, all faculty, and all university staff are required to receive a COVID-19 booster (if in the eligible timeframe). Completion of a booster when eligible brings you to the “up to date on vaccinations” status on Trojan Check.

Per these revised guidelines for workplaces, individuals on USC campus premises in locations where masking is required are now required to wear medical grade masks, which at minimum are surgical masks and may also include higher grade respirator masks (N95, KN95, or KF94). Campus premises where PPE is required include indoor common spaces, public areas, classrooms, libraries, offices, and laboratories (unless higher grade PPE is already specified).

FACULTY ENGAGEMENT:

Internal Funding Deadline Reminders: The RFP for the Collaboration Fund award has been modified and has a new proposal submission deadline date: 5 pm, Monday, February 28th, 2022 – click here for the updated version.  Zumberge Individual, Monday, March 7, 2022; Zumberge Diversity & Inclusion, Monday, March 14, 2022; Zumberge Interdisciplinary Large, Monday, March 21, 2022. All deadlines are at 5 pm. We are happy to report a robust number (24) of proposals received to the Ming Hsieh program. The review process is underway. 

APRU-Google collaboration – AI for Social Good : To USC scholars who are conducting research on AI-related topics:  Call for participation in ‘AI for Social Good: Strengthening Capabilities and Government Frameworks in Asia and the Pacific’ – a United Nations ESCAP-APRU-Google collaboration to bring together a research network in Asia and the Pacific to achieve transformative impact by providing active support in the development of country-specific AI governance frameworks and national capabilities. Click here for call document and more information.

University-Industry Demonstration Partnership (UIDP) Membership: As a reminder, USC has an UIDP organizational membership. All faculty, staff and students can access UIDP resources and participate in projects and activities. Login requires use of your USC email address. Click here for more information on member benefits.

FEDERAL LANDSCAPE UPDATES: The Office of Research is collecting input for the USC Senior Administration Thought Leadership on Advisory Committees from schools and institutions via Research Council members.  Responses with thought leader involvement for current members and/or future candidates are due on or before 9 February 2021. The Office of Research has identified and received endorsement of USC nominees for the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) Homeland Security Academic Advisory Council which is being re-established and will transition to supporting University Relations during the formal nomination process to DHS.

USC STEVENS CENTER FOR INNOVATION: The deadline for Letter of Intent submissions is Fri., Feb. 4, 2022, for the next round of the USC Stevens Technology Advancement Grants (TAG) program. Technology Advancement Grants support technologies invented at USC through validation or proof-of-concept development. TAG awards provide up to $100,000 for a project duration of no more than one year. For details on eligibility and how to apply, read the full announcement. Questions about the TAG program or the application process can be directed to Donaldson Santos at dgsantos@usc.edu or (213) 821-0946.

OPRS/IRB: We are working diligently on reducing the long wait times for social behavioral and biomedical exempt and expedited new study reviews. We have dedicated three analysts full-time to address the backlog of social behavioral exempt and expedited reviews and our wait time has come down from 11 weeks to 7.5 weeks. We expect this number to drop over the next several weeks and months as newly hired analysts are fully trained and able to take on more and more studies. We will continue to update you as we continue to improve.

CONTRACTS & GRANTS:  The Department of Contracts and Grants continues to offer weekly online office hours on Wednesday mornings 9 am-10 am via Zoom.  Feel free to drop in with a question and connect with DCG staff.