Research Partners Announcement & Workstream Update

VPRI welcomes Lan Chan-Marples, René Déry, Terra Garneau, Angela McCormick and Craig Taylor to the Research Partners Network.

Aminah Robinson Fayek and Julie Stephens - 28 July 2022

The VP (Research and Innovation) office continues to work closely with the colleges and faculties to implement the new research administration model we announced in December of 2021. The model aims to consolidate research administration services across the university to better support researchers and innovators within the new university operating model, and work remains underway in three main areas:

  • Structure: We are working to align the administrative services offered by VPRI, the colleges, and the faculties to create a more effective end-to-end service model. This includes planning collaboratively with the College Offices of Research.
  • Processes: We are reviewing administrative services to identify optimal resourcing and minimize duplication, and drawing on data from Uniforum to help with the analysis.
  • Funding: We are determining the budget required for an effective service model, reviewing the VPRI budget, and exploring other potential funding sources.

As we announced in December, the Research Partners Network plays a key role in this new model. In February we announced three Senior Research Partners, and today we are excited to announce five new Research Partners: Lan Chan-Marples, René Déry, Terra Garneau, Angela McCormick and Craig Taylor

Research Partners will serve two core functions: 

First, partners will assist with institution-wide research grant development. Each partner has specialized in an area of grant development based on a defined portfolio of research sponsors and/or programs. Grant development support will be available to any researcher across the institution who is engaged in research relating to a partner’s portfolio of research sponsors and programs.

Second, partners will offer faculty-specific support. This includes research-related support (e.g., participating in faculty-level committees, strategic planning, and increasing grant success) and other administrative support (e.g., training, advising, policy interpretation, advocacy, issue resolution) to an assigned portfolio of faculties. In this capacity research partners will directly connect VPRI to colleges and faculties, and vice versa. They will serve as a go-to resource for researchers, senior academic leaders, and administrative professionals. 

Researchers seeking grant development support should contact the partner responsible for the sponsor and/or program of their research. For general research support, contact the partner assigned to your faculty (see below). 

We are excited to welcome this talented group of staff members to the Research Partners Network and the redesigned research administration stream. We look forward to providing further updates as we continue to collaborate with the colleges and faculties on refining research administration services at the U of A. 

Aminah Robinson Fayek 
Vice-President (Research and Innovation)

Julie Stephens
Director, Research Partners

Meet the Research Partners

Lan Chan-Marples

Institution-wide research grant development support: Community-engaged research that directly address or respond to the needs of a community partner and/or require community contribution to the research design, question, methods, as well as health sciences research (e.g., Health research foundations, Community Foundations, Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council [SSHRC] Partnership Engage and Connection Grants)

Assigned faculties: Kinesiology, Sport, and Recreation; Medicine & Dentistry (basic science departments); Pharmacy & Pharmaceutical Sciences; Rehabilitation Medicine; School of Public Health; Native Studies

Lan Chan-Marples holds her master’s degree from the U of A’s Faculty of Education, and she began her university career at her alma mater in the fall of 2003 as a Research Facilitator for several social sciences faculties. In 2020, she added several health sciences faculties to her portfolio. As part of the newly formed Research Partner Network, Lan will focus on her health sciences faculties as the primary Research Partner contact, as well as on her new specialization in developing and implementing community engagement research support, training and resources for researchers across the university. 

René Déry 

Institution-wide research grant development support: Programs with predominantly a natural sciences and engineering sciences focus where there is no industry partner and/or formal match requirement (e.g., Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada [NSERC]; Alberta Innovates, Natural Resources Canada)

Assigned faculties: Augustana, Campus Saint-Jean, Science

René Déry has a PhD in Experimental Medicine from the U of A’s Faculty of Medicine & Dentistry. He has been working at the U of A since 1994 with the exception of three years between 2009 and 2012, where he worked in industry as an Alberta Innovates R&D Fellow. At the U of A, René worked in the Faculty of Medicine & Dentistry, the Alberta Diabetes Institute, the Faculty of Nursing and the Research Services Office. René's portfolio at RSO included the Faculty of Science, the Faculty of ALES (Renewable Resources) and Campus St-Jean. 

Terra Garneau 

Institution-wide research grant development support: Programs with predominantly a natural sciences and engineering sciences focus that require an industry partner and/or formal match for funding (e.g., NSERC Alliance, NSERC Idea to Innovation, Genome Canada/Genome Alberta)

Assigned faculties: Agricultural, Life & Environmental Sciences; Engineering 

Terra Garneau, P.Eng., came to the university with 15 years of experience in industry as an engineer, product developer and marketing product manager. She has a BSc in Electrical Engineering from the U of A, where she also earned certificates in Management Development and Marketing. This background has enabled her to excel in supporting the Faculty of Engineering as their Research Facilitator for the past 16 years. She has extensive experience assisting with the development of the NSERC Industrial Research Chair, Collaborative Research & Development, and Alliance funding applications—all programs where the U of A is ranked first in funded projects in Canada. As such, Terra is perfectly placed in the Industry & Applied Partnerships research specialization area.

Angela McCormick 

Institution-wide research grant development support: Programs with a health sciences research focus (e.g., Canadian Institutes of Health Research, Health Canada, National Institutes of Health), with the exception of community-engaged health research

Assigned faculties: Medicine & Dentistry (clinical departments); Nursing

Angela McCormick has worked with the Research Services Office in different roles since 2006 and has accumulated extensive knowledge and experience in research administration and proposal development across all university faculties. She is proud to be a U of A alumna, having completed Bachelor degrees in Commerce and in Education, and is grateful to be working with outstanding researchers and administrators. 

Craig Taylor 

Institution-wide research grant development support: Programs with a humanities and social sciences focus (e.g., SSHRC, Canadian Heritage, International Development Research Center) 

Assigned faculties: Arts, Alberta School of Business, Education, Law

Craig Taylor has more than 20 years of experience working in research, policy writing, grant development and research administration. He has been working at the U of A since 2009, initially as a sessional instructor in the Faculty of Arts and then as a Research Facilitator with the Research Services Office since 2016. Since joining RSO, Craig has worked with and supported researchers in a number of faculties, including ALES, Arts, Augustana and Nursing. Craig has a PhD and MA in Classical Archaeology, both from the U of A. 



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