University of Manitoba - University Governance - Governing Documents: Academic
Governing Documents: Academic
Effective Date:
April 1, 2009
Revised Date:
Review Date:
April 1, 2019
Approving Body:
Administration: Vice-President (Academic) and Provost
Policy: Academic Centres and Institutes
Vice-President (Academic) and Provost
University Secretary
Applies to:
Senate members; Faculty/School Councils

1.0 Reason for Procedure(s)

To set out the procedures secondary to the Policy: Academic Centres and Institutes.

2.0 Procedure(s)

2.1 Procedures for Establishing Academic Centres/Institutes

2.1.1 Approval Process

The authority to establish academic centres/institutes resides with the Board of Governors, normally on the recommendation of the Senate of the University. Proposals for academic centres/institutes are transmitted from the Senate Committee on Academic Review (SCAR) to Senate through its Executive Committee. Prior to their transmittal to SCAR, proposals for the establishment of academic centres/institutes are normally supported by departmental and faculty councils, as appropriate. All such proposals shall have the approval of the relevant dean or director, where applicable, and the Vice-President (Academic) and Provost. It is expected that a group of faculty will already have discovered the advantages of collaborative work and academic interchange before proposing the formal establishment of an academic centre/institute. Academic members of the centre/institute should have an established record of success in their fields as well as success in securing external support.

2.1.2 Contents of Proposal

Proposals must be comprehensive enough to allow the merits and feasibility of establishing an academic centre/institute to be assessed, and shall include the following:

1. Name of Academic Centre/Institute

2. Description and Justification. This shall include:

a) a concise statement of the mission and objectives of the proposed academic centre/institute and their relationship to the strategic plan of the University;

b) an identification of the scope of activities envisaged; and

c) a description of the benefits and opportunities likely to result from the establishment of the academic centre/institute, including an indication of how the proposed academic centre/institute would facilitate academic activities among faculty and educators within the University and in the wider community.

3. Constitution. This shall include a description of:

a) the organization structure of the proposed academic centre/institute, including the roles and responsibilities of its various committees;

b) the categories of membership and the criteria of each of these categories;

c) procedures whereby appointments will be made for each membership category; and

d) the privileges and responsibilities of membership.

4. Management. This should identify the University officer to whom the proposed academic centre/institute reports and in whom, financial responsibility is vested.

5. Proposed Membership. This shall include a listing of the proposed membership of the academic centre/institute broken down by the various membership categories, where applicable. For each proposed member, an abbreviated curriculum vitae shall be provided which details the following information: degree held, employment experience, professional activities, academic activities including teaching, service and outreach (last five years).

6. Physical Resources. This shall include:

a) a listing of available facilities (e.g., space and equipment) including an indication of current strengths and weaknesses; and
b) an indication of future requirements, including a proposed strategy for obtaining these resources.

7. Financial Resources. This shall include a detailed budget proposal for the first three to five years which includes the anticipated revenue from all sources (i.e., University, government, industry, donations, etc.) and proposed annual operation costs.

8. Statements of Support and Commitment. Letters of support and commitment should be signed by the appropriate University officer(s) (i.e., department head, dean/director, the Vice-President (Academic) & Provost). Any commitments or agreements to provide space, teaching release time or other resources, should be documented and signed by those authorized to make such commitments. In the absence of such statements, it will be assumed that no such commitments or agreements have been made.

2.2 Review of Proposal

On the receipt of a proposal to create a new academic centre/institute, SCAR will appoint an Ad Hoc Review Committee, normally consisting of not more than four members, at least two of whom shall be members of SCAR. This Ad Hoc Review Committee will submit a summary report and recommendation to SCAR which, in turn, will forward its recommendation in accordance with the approvals process previously described. In favorable cases, the Senate will recommend to the Board of Governors the establishment of the academic centre/institute for a period of three to five years, with continuation subject to a review process.

2.3 Annual Report Requirements

To facilitate the conduct of periodic review of academic centres/institutes, the director of each academic centre/institute shall provide an annual report to the University officer to whom he/she reports as well as to the Chair, SCAR. This report should detail: the activities of the centre and its personnel, including innovation in teaching, course delivery, etc., and other programmatic activities (e.g., conferences, workshops, seminars, etc.).


3.0 Procedures for Review Academic Centres/Institutes

In order to ensure that all academic activities are consistent with the goals of the University and that academic centres/institutes reflect positively on the general reputation of the University, all academic centres/institutes shall be reviewed by SCAR on a periodic basis but not less often than every five years.

3.1 Review Process

3.1.1 Notice of the review will be communicated to the director of the academic centre/institutes by the Chair of SCAR at least nine (9) months prior to the end of the mandate of the academic centre/institute.

3.1.2 In response to this notification, the director of the academic centre/institute shall submit to the Chair of SCAR a report which contains the following:

a) a description of how and why the centre/institute has achieved or revised its original objectives; a detailed listing of its educational and education-related accomplishments; a current membership list; and a detailed financial statement;

b) a five-year plan which identifies future directions and development strategies;

c) letters indicating continued support for the academic centre/institute from appropriate department heads and faculty/school deans/director; and

d) the names of individuals who could provide external assessments of the academic centre/institute

3.1.3 On the basis of this report as well as a review of the annual reports, SCAR shall determine whether a formal, independent review committee should be struck to conduct a full review of the academic centre/institute. If a full review of the academic centre/institute is not warranted, in that it is clear that the academic centre/institute either qualifies for continuation or that it does not, SCAR will recommend to Senate that the academic centre/institute continue for a period of three to five years, or that it be terminated, without further review. Any legal agreements that affect the status of the academic centre/institute must be taken into consideration in the formal recommendation.

3.1.4 In the event that a full review is required, a Review Committee will be appointed by the Chair of SCAR in consultation with SCAR at least six (6) months prior to the end of the mandate of the Centre. The membership of the Review Committee shall normally include: a senior educator with administrative experience and no direct involvement in the academic centre/institute (preferably a former dean or department head) who shall act as Chair of the committee; the director of another academic centre/institute; an educator who is not affiliated with the academic centre/institute but is knowledgeable in the field of its educational activity; the Chair of SCAR or his/her designate to assess financial and institutional concerns, and other members as deemed appropriate.

3.1.5 The mechanism by which the Review Committee elects to conduct the review shall be at the discretion of the committee in consultation with the Chair of SCAR. Notwithstanding, the primary focus of the review shall be an assessment of: the extent to which the academic centre/institute has fulfilled its objectives; the appropriateness of its future goals; and its current and projected financial viability. The review process should involve meetings with the director and members and should also include the solicitation of external assessments as well as discussion with non-members of the academic centre/institute from related departments/fields.

3.1.6 The Review Committee shall provide a written report to the Chair of SCAR within four months of being established. Before submitted this report the Chair of the Review Committee shall provide a copy of the report to the director of the academic centre/institute under review to ensure that the report contains no factual errors. The director may submit a written commentary on the report to the Chair of SCAR.

4.0 Accountability

The University Secretary is responsible for advising the President that a formal review of the Procedure is required.


5.0 Review

5.1 Formal Procedure reviews will be conducted every ten (10) years. The next scheduled review date for this/these Procedure is April 1, 2019.

5.2 In the interim, this/these Procedure(s) may be revised or rescinded if:

a) the Approving Body deems necessary; or
b) the relevant Bylaw, Regulation(s) or Policy is revised or rescinded.

6.0 Effect on Previous Statements

6.1 This/these Procedure(s) supersede(s) the following:

a) all previous Board/Senate Procedures, and resolutions on the subject matter contained herein; and
b) all previous Administration Procedures, and resolutions on the subject matter contained herein; and
c) all previous Faculty/School Council Procedures stemming from the Faculty/School Council Bylaw and academic and admission Regulations and any resolutions on the subject matter contained herein; and

7.0 Cross References

Policy: Academic Centres and Institutes