Public research university leaders from throughout the Southeast will gather at UGA on April 21 to discuss the future ability of public research universities to serve as the foundation of the nation’s innovation and research capacity. Although closed to the public, the plenary sessions will be streamed live from the UGA home page, www.uga.edu.
This is the second in a series of five regional meetings organized by the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities. Other regional meeting hosts are the University of Texas System (held April 1), the University of Washington (April 26), the University of Wisconsin-Madison (April 28) and Rutgers (April 30).
Through discussion of key questions at the regional meetings, APLU seeks to develop a framework for what public research universities require—and what federal agencies, states and universities must do—if they are to maintain or increase their ability to perform research needed to maintain the nation’s global competitiveness.
Innovation and research are critical elements to a nation’s success in the highly competitive global marketplace. University research provides the base from which an important part of America’s most competitive innovations arise.
In recent decades, many U.S. public research universities have experienced deterioration in state appropriations per student, threatening their ability to serve the nation.
Concern about the future health of research universities is shared broadly. U.S. Sens. Barbara Mikulski (D-Md.) and Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) and U.S. Reps. Bart Gordon (D-Tenn.) and Ralph Hall (R-Texas) asked the National Academy of Sciences on June 22 to initiate a competitiveness study focused specifically on the health of research universities. Their request expressed concern that America’s research universities are “at risk” and asked the National Academies to study the competitive position of American research universities, both public and private.