The University’s new Strategic Plan for Research and Innovation

At the meeting of the University Senate on 26 November the committees entrusted with drafting a new scientific policy plan to substitute the one that has been in force since 2001 were constituted. The proposal for restructuring the courses provided by the faculties and school, and the reports by the Ombuds Officer and on the Quality and Equality plans were also submitted

The vice-rector for Scientific and Research Policy, Josep Manel Ricart, defended the need for a new strategic plan for research because of the great changes that have come about since the approval of the current plan in 2001. In the first place, the URV has grown and evolved considerably, and new structures have been created. Points of improvement need to be identified, the URv needs to be reinforced as an active and competitive research university, and the URV’s research strategy needs to be aligned with society’s new challenges and public policies, particularly with those of the European Union.

Five lines of work have been proposed. The first is the social strategy, value and impact of research and innovation. The other lines focus on the people who do research, how research is organized, infrastructures and resources, and, finally, quality, evaluation and recognition. The URV’s Research Committee has been enlarged and will work in conjunction with a technical committee and stakeholders to draft a new plan that will be submitted to the Senate in a year’s time. One of the points that needs to be defined in this plan is the role the URV has to play in the processes of social innovation.

Restructuring of the offer of courses

In this first Senate meeting of the academic year 2015-16, the final report of the master plan for restructuring the offer of bachelor’s, master’s and doctoral degrees was submitted by the vice-rector for Academic policy and Teaching and Research Staff, Josep Pallarès.

The Master Plan was approved by the Senate in November 2014 and the criteria for restructuring the offer of courses in May 2015. The final report has defined the academic programmes of faculties and schools for the period 2016-2018, which the Governing council will have to carry into effect with a specific academic programme that will have to be agreed to with the Catalan Government before the curricula can be approved by the Agency for University Quality (AQU Catalunya).

In total, between the proposals for reforming the degrees that are already in existence and the proposals for new degrees, there are 39 proposals for new degree programmes: four doctoral programmes, 19 master’s and 16 bachelor’s degrees. Of the bachelor degrees, three of the proposals are for three-year courses.

The reports on the progress of the Quality and Equality plans, which were judged to be satisfactory by the lecturers responsible, were submitted to the Senate as was the annual report of the Ombuds Officer (see separate article). Representatives were appointed for the vacancies on the Governing Council and for the renewal of the Senate commissions.

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