Research Ombudsperson


Mission

The Research Ombudsperson Office is a place where members of the UTSA research community - faculty, staff and student employees - can go for assistance to address questions, concerns and complaints about research related issues on an informal basis.

What is the role of the Research Ombudsperson?

The Research Ombudsperson is a neutral individual who serves the University research community by providing confidential and informal assistance for resolving conflicts, concerns and complaints by evaluating options, answering research related questions or seeking others who are subject matter experts and if necessary facilitating the mediation of disputes to achieve a fair and equitable solution for all parties.

There are areas within the Research Division that the Ombudsperson may interact with including the six research centers under Sponsored Project Administration, human and animal subject, biosafety, chemical safety, radiation and laser safety, and conflict of interest under Research Integrity. The ombudsperson will seek input from these areas if reports of deficiencies in the processes or services exist and will work to resolve them in a timely manner.

The Research Ombudsperson

  • Listens to and discusses individual's research-related concerns
  • Identifies and evaluates options to address faculty and staff research concerns
  • Provides and clarifies research policy information
  • Acts as a facilitator or mediator
  • Serves as a referral agent
  • Makes recommendations for change to enhance the mission of the university

The Research Ombudsperson carries out duties in a neutral, confidential, informal and independent manner.

Neutral: The Ombudsperson considers the interests of all parties in a situation, in order to assist the parties in reaching mutually acceptable agreements that are fair, equitable and consistent with the mission and policies of UTSA. The Office provides an impartial and objective resource for the University research community.

Confidential: The Ombudsperson holds all communications with those seeking assistance in strict confidence. The only exception to this confidentiality is where there appears to be a risk to the safety of the individual or a violation of state or federal statute.

Informal: The Ombudsperson listens, seeks to understand, and provides information to help solve problems. The Ombudsperson does not participate in any formal grievance, adjudicative or administrative process. Use of the Ombudsperson services is completely voluntary and not required in any grievance process.

Independent: The Office of the Research Ombudsperson officially reports to the Vice President for Research but is independent in structure, function and appearance to the highest degree possible.

** The Research Ombudsperson does not provide legal or psychological counseling**

How to Contact the Research Ombudsperson

Phone: 210-458-8012
Fax: 210-458-5193
Email: Donna.Edmondson@utsa.edu
Office: North Paseo Building (NPB) at Main Campus, 2.116A
Mailing Address: The University of Texas at San Antonio, Office of the Vice President for Research, Attn: Research Ombudsperson, One UTSA Circle, San Antonio, Texas 78249