The PROTECT (Puerto Rico Testsite for Exploring Contamination Threats) Center includes five research projects, two research support cores and four required enrichment cores, one of which is the Administrative Core. The primary objective of the Administrative Core is to provide a formal structure for oversight, planning, coordination, and promotion of cross-disciplinary, multi-university interaction by projects and cores.
The specific aims of the Administrative Core are to (1) provide center leadership and coordination;(2) facilitate and ensure integration of cross-disciplinary, multi-university activities;(3) provide fiscal management and administrative services and monitor resources and expenditures;(4) maintain smooth interaction with external advisory committee members and active communication with the NIEHS, EPA and SRP;(5) provide center documentation, reporting and assessment;and (6) promote PROTECT activities among the participating institutions, government and industry. Managing a geographically distributed, multi-university team requires a sophisticated administrative structure. Substantial planning, organization, and effective communications tools promote active collaboration and coordination. To this end, the Administrative Core developed a framework that links projects, institutions and participants. This includes highly-qualified and experienced Center Directors who manage and guide PROTECT research, training and stakeholder engagement activities;an Executive Committee to manage, facilitate and monitor the technical quality of projects and cores;and a dedicated Administrative Staff who support PROTECT research and administrative activities using appropriate information technology, financial and reporting software and communications tools. To advise and guide the effort;an External Advisory Committee was formed with five subcommittees focused on important issues, i.e. the Scientific Advisory Committee assesses research merit, cross-disciplinary integration, translation and relevance;the Institutional Partnership Advisory Committee provides necessary institutional-level guidance and promotes long-range strategic goals;and Research Translation, Training, and Community Engagement Advisory Committees support their respective cores. Frequent, routine management and coordination/integration meetings are planned for optimal participation by PROTECT personnel and advisors. This effective strategy was used during the first three years of PROTECT, resulting in collaboration and integration across projects, cores and institutions, successful communication with advisory committees, and timely, accurate financial tracking and progress reporting to NIEHS/SRP.

Public Health Relevance

The Administrative Core provides a formal structure for oversight, planning, coordination, and promotion of cross-disciplinary interaction among all of the projects, cores, and participating institutions. The leadership and guidance provided by the Administrative Core is necessary to fulfill the ultimate goal of PROTECT: to understand the impact of environmental contamination on preterm birth in Puerto Rico and beyond.

Agency
National Institute of Health (NIH)
Institute
National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS)
Type
Hazardous Substances Basic Research Grants Program (NIEHS) (P42)
Project #
2P42ES017198-05
Application #
8649389
Study Section
Special Emphasis Panel (ZES1-LKB-K (S))
Project Start
Project End
Budget Start
2014-04-01
Budget End
2015-03-31
Support Year
5
Fiscal Year
2014
Total Cost
$192,590
Indirect Cost
$68,738
Name
Northeastern University
Department
Type
DUNS #
001423631
City
Boston
State
MA
Country
United States
Zip Code
02115
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Yu, Xue; Ghasemizadeh, Reza; Padilla, Ingrid et al. (2015) Spatiotemporal changes of CVOC concentrations in karst aquifers: analysis of three decades of data from Puerto Rico. Sci Total Environ 511:10-Jan
Ferguson, Kelly K; McElrath, Thomas F; Chen, Yin-Hsiu et al. (2015) Repeated measures of urinary oxidative stress biomarkers during pregnancy and preterm birth. Am J Obstet Gynecol 212:208.e1-8
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