Provost and Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs Sarah Mangelsdorf and Vice Chancellor for Research and Graduate Education Marsha Mailick are pleased to announce the second-round call for proposals for the Cluster Hiring Initiative.
The purpose of cluster hires is to catalyze innovative responses to contemporary problems that can only be solved through research that crosses disciplinary areas through (a) deepening our interdisciplinary research strength in key areas of current research or (b) to catalyze areas of future research promise in new areas. An interdisciplinary cluster is a group of three faculty with overlapping research interests, typically hired across different units. Unsuccessful proposals from the first round are eligible for resubmission in this second round.
For the first six years (five years for faculty hired with tenure), the initial salary costs of new faculty hires in each cluster will be fully covered by central funds. Any salary increases over this time period should be covered by the units involved. After the initial funding period, the initial salary costs will be split 70:30 with the involved units (central funding covering 70 percent of the salary cost, with the units covering the remaining 30 percent). We will continue to ask the units to cover any future salary increases.
The main goal of the cluster program is to support faculty hiring, and we expect the majority of requested funds in proposals must be for the recruitment and hiring of faculty. Successful, already-existing clusters also may make proposals to replace a departed cluster colleague; such requests will go through the same process as proposals for new clusters.
Start-up funding is not included in the new centrally-funded cluster allocation; these funds should be sought through the normal process. All proposals – regardless of whether they are made by individual faculty members, departments, research centers, or deans – must involve consultation with the relevant units, schools and colleges and provide evidence of that consultation, typically through letters of support.
Groups of individual faculty, research centers, or schools/colleges can submit a proposal for a cluster hire.