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Guidelines & Regulations for Research & Grants
Research is a creative work undertaken by systematically investigating and studying materials and sources to establish facts and reach new conclusions to increase the stock of knowledge, including knowledge of man, culture and society, and using this stock of knowledge to devise new applications. One of the main aims of university education is to create knowledge, which is impossible without research. Research is considered the best source of knowledge and one of the key contributing factors to the socio-economic development of a country. The faculty members are responsible for taking the initiative in this respect and playing a leading role in carrying out research. However, there are severe impediments to such activities as neither the public nor the private universities have the proper incentives or statuary framework to encourage Research. Worldwide, a university's ranking is primarily judged by its research activities and outcomes. Bangladesh is lagging far behind the international community, even behind many universities in the South Asian region in this respect. To overcome this obstruction, Uni South Asia has initiated to provide Research Grants for its faculty members/staff to conduct quality research activities and transform Uni South Asia into a leading research hub. Dr Muhit Centre for Advanced Research of University of South Asia, is assigned to coordinate and encourage research activities in Uni South Asia. The cell invites research proposals regularly from departmental research cells in the respective areas.
1. Code of Practice for Research Work
Uni South Asia expects all members of the university, including staff and students and those who are not members of the university but who will conduct research on university premises or using university facilities or funding for their research, to ensure the highest standards of ethics and integrity in the conduct of their research work. In pursuance of such high standards, they must::
a. Be honest in proposing, conducting and reporting research. They should strive to ensure the accuracy of research data and results and acknowledge the contributions of others.
b. Comply with ethical and legal obligations as required by statutory and regulatory authorities, including seeking ethical review and appropriate research approval. They should ensure that any research undertaken complies with the university policy and procedures and any other agreements and/or terms and conditions relating to the project. It also allows for proper governance and transparency.
c Seek to ensure the safety, dignity, well-being and rights of those associated with the research.
d. Effectively and transparently manage any conflicts of interest, whether actual or potential, reporting these to the appropriate authority as necessary.
e. Ensure that they have the necessary skills and training for their field of research.
f. Recognize their accountability to the University and their peers for the conduct of their research.
g. Due to subject disciplinary norms, acknowledge that authorship of a research output should be attributed only to a researcher who has made a significant intellectual, scholarly or practical contribution to that output and is willing to take responsibility for the contribution.
h. Follow the requirements and guidance of any professional bodies in their field of research. Researchers who are members of a regulated profession must follow the requirements and guidance of the body regulating their profession.
1.2 Failure to comply with this Code of Practice and Procedure may give rise to an allegation of Misconduct in Research, and misconduct in research may be grounds for disciplinary action and, if severe, for dismissal or expulsion.
2. Procedures to submit research proposals
a. Research proposals will be invited twice in an academic year. The 1st call will be in January and the 2nd call in July.
b. There is no margin on the proposed research topic. Research may be basic or applied. However, the applicants must have expertise in the respective areas.
c. All the principal investigators must be the Uni South Asia faculty/staff. Any faculty member is eligible to submit the proposal as the principal investigator. The principal investigator can choose researchers from inside Uni South Asia. They will be allowed to include external members as the researcher of the project. Preferably, new faculty members are encouraged for the Uni South Asia research grants.
d. The principal investigator will be solely responsible for the project and its day-to-day operation, financial transactions and fulfilment of project objectives. All the project expenditures will follow the usual Uni South Asia rules. The expenditure summary will have to be submitted along with the final report.
e. Applicants (principal investigator) will be eligible for only one grant in each funding period. Any applicant, who has already received the grant in the earlier call, can’t submit a new proposal before completing the report of the previous one.
f. Preferably, those who enjoy the grants should not quit Uni South Asia without completing the research project. In appropriate cases, the Uni South Asia authority may accept the resignation of the principal investigator if convinced that the project's transition under the proposed new leadership will be smooth and appropriate.
3. Research Grant
a. Awards are subject to an all-inclusive maximum of 1 00,000 BDT for a 1-year project. Please note that the maximum grant will be 50,000 BDT for students and a maximum of 1,00,000 BDT for faculty/staff. The board/ Research Committee will decide the grant amount depending on the proposed research proposal.
b. Funds for research project support may be requested, including research assistance, computer typing, printing, copying, secretarial support, etc. The travel grant will not be included, and only funding directed at the research project will be considered.
c. Funds may be explicitly allocated for purchasing equipment/materials required for a research project. The applicant's research program must specifically justify a request for funding to purchase or lease equipment/materials.
d. Equipment or materials (including software, books, and CD ROMs) purchased through the University of South Asia Research grant remain the property of University of South Asia.
e. A vendor quotation with the cost must support all equipment requests.
4. Procedure for Application
The Proposals must be submitted as per the prescribed format. The proposal's original copy (Soft copy) must be submitted to the coordinator of Dr Muhit Centre for Advanced Research of University of South Asia.
The research proposal should include the following:
a) Respond to all items included in the application form.
b) The project's objective should include what the research expects to achieve and the possible outcomes after successfully completing the project.
c) The scientific rationality of the research work must be mentioned with appropriate references. The proposal must clearly mention the novelty/further development expected in the proposed project compared to the present state of the art. [Expected to include relevant literature review].
d) In methodology, the actual process of conducting their search (like if the project will be simulation-based or any hardware developed, the sequence of events like any field work, survey or physical measurements etc.) should be elaborated.
e) Expected results and possible outcomes should include what research work results are expected to achieve and how the results will be significant as far as the theory or application of the project topic is concerned. In the case of practical application, it is important to mention the actual benefit that can be achieved from the research outcome.
f) Duration of the project should identify the milestones of the activities, description of the activities and their duration in a Gantt chart.
g) Important budget components should mention with proper justification the list of hardware or software or any other equipment needed to be purchased for the project. The possible application of the hardware, software, or other equipment in further research and development after the project is completed should also be highlighted. The financial proposal should include all the cost components with elaboration.
5. Evaluation of the Proposal
University of South Asia authority will form evaluation committees with the Vice Chancellor, Dean of the Faculty and departmental Head of that respective field, coordinator of the Research Cell, and an external expert from the related field to evaluate the proposal. The selection procedure will have 2 phases: Phase 1 will evaluate the proposals to make a shortlist, and Phase 2 will be a 15-minute presentation for the short-listed projects. The decision taken by the respective expert committee will be final.
6. Schedule of Payments of Grants
The Research Grants will be allocated in 3 phases,
- Preparatory Phase
- Research Conduction Phase
- Report Writing and Finalizing Phase
The total grants will be distributed phase-wise in the ratio of 40%, 30% and 30%, respectively. The Board/Research Committee will decide the maximum duration of each phase depending upon the proposed research proposal.
- In the 1st step, the applicants will submit an activity-wise budget only for the 1st phase against their accepted research proposal to release 40% of the grant.
- After completing the 1st phase, each researcher will submit the report for the 1st phase along with the activity-wise budget for the 2nd phase to release the money for the next phase.
- Awardees will repeat the steps highlighted in the 2nd phase to get the remaining grant.
7. Subsequent Requirements and Publication
The principal investigator has to submit a research activity progress report quarterly to the Research Cell. After the completion of the project, the principal investigator has to submit the final project report, which includes an abstract, acknowledgement, outline, introduction, literature review, scientific rationality, methodology, data analysis, results, discussion, conclusion, and recommendation (if any).
Research Grant award recipients are encouraged to present their research results at the Uni South Asia Research Committee meeting.
The measure of success of a project will be judged by the papers published out of the project. The results/outcome of the projects should be published in the Uni South Asia Journal for documents. The research must be published in international journals (preferably Q1/Q2 Scopus-indexed journals).
Award recipients are requested to acknowledge University of South Asia's support in any presentation, research thesis and journal publication that emanate from the work supported.