University Support for Research

There are a number of administrative offices and divisions at Columbia that offer support for research. This web page will introduce you to them. For more information on each office or division listed below, please visit the web link provided. To access the sponsored projects handbook click here,

Executive Vice President For Research
The Office of the Executive Vice President for Research has overall responsibility for the University's research enterprise. It oversees most of the operations which support research and is responsible for establishing and maintaining University-wide policies relating to research. The Office also assists investigators seeking research funding, encourages interdisciplinary research, provides seed money for early stage investigations, and generally helps provide for the intellectual and physical environment to maintain high quality of research and maximize productivity. The office includes a Research Initiatives Coordinator to offer special support for center grants and other large cross-disciplinary projects.
Sponsored Projects Administration
Research Administration is the University's primary support office for sponsored research grants and contracts. RA can provide assistance through all stages of a proposal. It is responsible for assuring compliance with the regulatory and other requirements that govern the grant application process and for the non-financial requirements that govern awards. 
Research Administration can help investigators learn about funding opportunities and apply for funding. Each department is served by a dedicated project manager(Kammy Cabral for SEAS) for the pre-award process and a financial analyst for account setups and other post-award matters. The RA web site contains information about GRANTA 101 ( a course on grants fundamentals) InfoED (the New grants management IT system) and other help.
RASCAL is the University's on-line research compliance system. Through RASCAL, you can create and submit for regular approval most research protocols, draft content forms, complete required and additional training, build a CV, and submit your conflict of interest disclosures.
The Division of Restricted Funds in the Office of the Controller is responsible for the Financial Administration and reporting of all sponsored research awards, and for ensuring compliance with the regulatory and other requirements that govern the financial management of those awards.
Columbia Technology Ventures
Columbia Technology Ventures helps facilitate transfer of scientific discoveries and innovations from the University setting to the marketplace in furtherance of the public interest. CTV’s mission is:
  • To facilitate the translation of academic research into practical applications, for the benefit of society on a local, national and global basis

  • To support the research of Columbia faculty by generating funding for the University and facilitating partnerships with industry where appropriate

  • To educate and serve as a resource for the Columbia community on matters relating to entrepreneurship, intellectual property, and technology commercialization.
  • If you believe that you have an invention or discovery that is or may be patentable, contact CTV for guidance on filing the appropriate forms and to obtain a brochure explaining the technology transfer process. CTV also can assist researchers on material transfer agreements that may be required to send or receive certain reagents.    
Environmental Health & Safety
EH&RS provide a broad range of services to promote the health and safety of all university personnel, and to protect the health and safety of the community and the environment in which we live and work. Personnel conducting laboratory research using potentially infections materials, hazardous chemicals, recombinant DNA, and/or radioactive materials need to attend the relevant EH&RS-sponsored safety training(s). The use of recombinant DNA must be approved by Columbia's Institutional Biosafety Committee. The ER&RS web site contains laboratory safety information along with safety training schedules.
Research Compliance and Training
The Office of Research Compliance and Training helps ensure that Columbia faculty and staff are in compliance with the complex web of regulatory requirements that govern research. The ORCT collaborates with many of the other offices on campus to foster an integrated research compliance program. The ORCT administers the University's Conflict of Interest review process for research, serves as a resource for international research compliance issues, and administers Columbia's Standing Committee on Conduct of Research, which addresses issues of research misconduct. The ORCT works to integrate compliance education programming across the University, and to develop new programming that promotes understanding of compliance issues throughout the research enterprise. The ORCT web site contains information about required training for researchers, postdocs and others involved in research.
Office of Postdoctoral Affairs
The mission of the Office of Postdoctoral Affairs is to enhance the educational and training experience of the University's postdoctoral appointees. The Office provides administrative support, serves as an information clearinghouse, and fosters communication among postdocs, faculty and administrators. it also works to promote consistency in University policies that affect postdocs.
Human Subjects Research
If you plan to conduct research that involves human subjects, including biomedical investigations, one of columbia's four Institutional Review Boards will help ensure that your study complies with all applicable ethical and regulatory requirements. The University's IRB's are responsible for protecting human subjects in research and are made up of faculty and community members. All human subjects research conducted by Columbia Faculty, staff and students must be approved by a Columbia IRB.
Clinical Trials Office

The mission of the Clinical Trials Office is to facilitate quality clinical trial research - the effective and efficient evaluation of new pharmaceuticals and medical devices - by providing the Columbia University Medical Center research community with comprehensive administrative services that help move trials quickly from initial proposal through contract execution. CTO assists with trials supported by federal and foundation grants and industry contracts, including investigator-initiated trials.

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