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20: Institutional Support for the RIO and IRB

Among its other responsibilities (i.e, conflict of interest and research integrity) the University's Research Integrity Office (RIO) oversees human subject research conducted by University and affiliate faculty, students, and staff.

RIO's responsibilities include assessment of oversight requirements for projects that may or may not involve human subject research; determinations of exempt research; coordination of reviews by external IRBs; and management of the University's two IRBs, one each for biomedical and social behavioral research.

The RIO is located administratively within the Office of the Vice President for Research and Innovation. The Institutional Official for the RIO and the IRBs is the Vice President for Research and Innovation (VPRI). The VPRI delegates administrative oversight of the RIO to the Assistant VP, Research Administration.

Under the authority of the University President, the VPRI has sufficient standing, authority, and independence to ensure implementation and maintenance of the University's HRPP which includes RIO, the IRBs, and all other institutional offices and committees whose roles involve human subjects research.

The VPRI has the authority to insure the necessary infrastructure is in place for the support and safe conduct of human subjects research. The University Administrative Manual codifies the authority of and support for the VPRI in assuring adequate resources exist for a quality HRPP.

Further, the University recognizes that responsibility for human research protection

  • is not the sole responsibility of the RIO or the IRBs;
  • transcends departmental jurisdictions, and therefore falls to multiple entities within the University, affiliate institutions, and the research community; and
  • involves institutional administrators, offices, and committees when the individual's or unit's core functions are to support the research enterprise.

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