UW-Madison Drops in Research Expenditure Rankings

nsf1For the first time since 1972, UW-Madison does not rank in the top five in research expenditures as ranked by the National Science Foundation. UW-Madison dropped from fourth to sixth this year, with $1.07 billion in research spending in 2015.

Johns Hopkins University continues to lead in research funding ($2.31 billion), followed by the University of Michigan ($1.37 billion), the University of Washington ($1.18 billion), the University of California-San Francisco ($1.13 billion), and the University of California-San Diego ($1.1 billion). Among the top 30 universities, Wisconsin led among the four that experienced a drop in spending, with a 3.6 percent reduction.

UW-Madison Vice Chancellor for Research and Graduate Education Marsha Mailick noted the impact of disinvestment by the state:

“We are extremely proud of our faculty, staff and students but if Wisconsin is to remain at the pinnacle of American research universities, the state will need to reinvest to be sure we have the faculty positions and conditions necessary to attract and retain the best researchers.”

UW-Madison Budget in Brief

UW-Madison recently released the 2016-17 Budget in Brief, a publication designed to help people, including legislators and other government officials, better understand the university’s budget.

As we get closer to the 2017-19 state budget process, PROFS encourages faculty and others to take a look and become more familiar with UW-Madison budget details.

Election Day

Election_Day_voting12_5570Polls are open in Wisconsin until 8 pm tonight, Tuesday, November 8.

Information on where to vote, acceptable forms of voter identification, and how to register to vote if not yet registered is available here.

Information on how to vote in other states is here and here.

October Board of Regents Meeting

The University of Wisconsin System Board of Regents will meet at the Davies Center at UW-Eau Claire Thursday and Friday, October 6 and 7. Livestream coverage of the full board portions of the meeting is here.

The regents meet in committee Thursday morning.

The Education Committee will consider new degree programs at UW-Madison and UW-Milwaukee and changes to faculty personnel rules at UW-Whitewater and UW-Green Bay. UW-Eau Claire will also present its academic master plan.

The Business and Finance Committee will consider several contractual agreements at UW-Madison and hear an update on information security.

The Capital Planning and Budget Committee will discuss new building projects at UW-Eau Claire and UW-La Crosse, consider a lease agreement for UW-Madison College of Letters and Science career services, and hear an update on State Building Commission action.

The Research, Economic Development, and Innovation Committee will accept the UW School of Medicine and Public Health Partnership Program annual report and hear a panel discussion on business and community mobilization in Eau Claire.

The Audit Committee will discuss the Fiscal Audit 2017 Plan progress. The committee will also move into closed session to discuss a personnel issue.

The full board will meet Thursday afternoon. UW-Eau Claire Chancellor Jim Schmidt will host a presentation, Partners in Wisconsin’s Future, and Tom Still, president of the Wisconsin Technology Council will discuss UW System’s role as an economic driver in the state. The board will also move into closed session to discuss the naming of a facility at UW-Madison.

On Friday, the board will take action on committee work and hear reports from UW System Board of Regents President Regina Millner and UW System President Ray Cross. They will also consider a resolution (below) on tuition, affordability, and quality.

UW-Madison State Budget Forum

UW-Madison hosted a campus forum on the state budget and its impact on the university on  September 14. The discussion covered the university’s budget landscape and how it has changed over time, the impact of budget cuts, the UW System 2017-19 budget request, and how alumni and friends of the university are being engaged.

Chancellor Rebecca Blank, UW System Board of Regents President Regina Millner, Vice Chancellor for Finance and Administration Laurent Heller, and Vice Chancellor for University Relations Charles Hoslet were panelists.

These slides were used during the forum:

Legislative Update

History 

The 2015-17 biennial budget process was difficult – UW System received a $250 million budget cut along with a two-year extension of a tuition freeze. PROFS played a key role in one budget bright spot: funding for the much-needed Chemistry Building project. In prior budget cycles, PROFS led the fight to ensure retirement contributions are taken pre-tax, saving the average faculty member about $1,800 per year and successfully lobbied for domestic partner benefits and first-day health coverage for faculty and staff. Looking ahead:

2017-19 Biennial Budget

While Governor Walker instructed all agency heads to prepare budgets with zero increases, the Board of Regents approved a $42.5 million increase in state funding over the next biennium. The increase will largely go toward initiatives to develop the state’s workforce and improve its economy, a plan called 2020FWD. The governor has also said he might consider performance-based funding increases for UW. Criteria for such an increase might include graduation and post-graduation employment rates.

FWD2020 highlights:

  • $26.1 million for the educational pipeline, with a focus on addressing the state’s workforce needs and increasing the student pipeline.
  • $6 million to improve the university experience, with a focus on creating graduates who are creative, innovative and entrepreneurial.
  • $6.4 million for business and community mobilization, with a focus on bringing together the university, businesses and the greater community.
  • $4 million for operational excellence, with a focus on improvements in targeted performance areas. The budget process is lengthy, beginning with formal introduction early next year and final passage most likely in late June. PROFS will be involved throughout the entire process and communicate regularly with faculty.

Tuition Freeze

Earlier this summer, Governor Walker said he supported an additional one or two-year freeze on University of Wisconsin System tuition, lengthening the current freeze to six years.

Regent Action on Tenure, Shared Governance and Post-Tenure Review

Last year, PROFS regularly communicated with the chair and members of the Regent Tenure Policy Task Force as they developed new tenure policies. We will continue to aggressively advocate on behalf of UW-Madison faculty as the Regents work to approve a post-tenure review policy this fall.

Fall Elections

All Wisconsin Assembly seats and 16 seats on the Senate are on the ballot in November. Republicans hold comfortable margins in both houses, but some pundits believe the Senate could flip parties if a Democratic presidential landslide occurs. A split legislature would have an impact on the upcoming state budget process and could slow Republican legislative efforts such as a proposed ban on fetal tissue research and campus carry.

!-- eof 3 cols -->