Building and Supporting Research Excellence at Universities

Planning, support and management of research has become an increasingly important function in universities and many higher education institutions (HEI) are in the process of setting up or restructuring their research management operations and offices. Even institutions with primary focus on teaching need to conduct and support research both to attract good faculty and to ensure that their curriculum offers the students up-to-date knowledge in their field and skills for analysis and problem solving that can be acquired through research engagement.

The course is addressed to institutions and professionals interested in developing or upgrading their expertise in research management and enhancement of roles and functions. Staff working in research management offices, research centers, libraries and other units involved in planning, implementation and support of research activities are welcome to apply.

At a Glance

The course on Building and Supporing Research Excellence at Universities has been designed to provide staff working in Open Society University Network (OSUN) member institutions and other higher education institutions with a transformative experience to enhance their administrative, managerial and leadership capabilities.

Participants will engage critically with current professional practices and the latest research in the field of higher education management.

The goal of this specific course is to enhance participants’ knowledge and skills for supporting research excellence at their home university. Participants will also have the opportunity to learn about the different models in which OSUN partner institutions manage research activities and provide professional support for their faculty and students in this area.


Course participants will attend six thematic sessions in preparation of developing and presenting their final projects on managing research activities at their institutions.

The course is designed for working professionals and relies on regular class attendance and participation.

Participants are expected to:

  • attend all sessions (exception for missing one class can be made in justified cases only);
  • be familiar with the recommended reading materials;
  • actively participate in class discussions and activities;
  • present at least one individual project during the course;
  • work individually or in a group on a final project (to be presented during the last class).

Course Leads

Dr. Norbert Sabic, Chief of Staff, Central European University

Dr. Pusa Nastase, Senior Program Manager and Lead of the Global Professional Development Program at Yehuda Elkana Center for Higher Education, Central European University

Learning Outcomes

By the end of the course participants will be able to:

  • demonstrate familiarity with, and a critical understanding of how institutional research policies are designed and implemented;
  • recognize key factors and challenges in contemporary higher education settings related to research performance management;
  • demonstrate capacity to analyze and respond effectively to major trends in research management that can be applied to improve current practices in higher education;
  • understand and be able to apply alternative solutions to specific problems or situations in their home institution.

Target Audience

The course is designed for university leaders and managers with prior experience in research or research management activities, interested in upgrading their knowledge on the topic or getting feedback on specific challenges related to building and supporting research excellence.  Currently, the course is offered to participants representing OSUN member institutions.

Credit, Deadlines, Contact

The successful completion of the course will grant participants a Certificate of Professional Development and the possibility to acquire 4 ECTS (or 2 US) credits.

For the June 2021 intake, 20 participants from 6 OSUN member institutions have been admitted to the course.

For queries and more information, please reach out to: Dr. Pusa Nastase, Lead of the Global Professional Development Program at Yehuda Elkana Center for Higher Education -


The Open Society University Network (OSUN) is a global network of educational institutions that integrates learning and the advancement of knowledge—in the social sciences, the humanities, the sciences and the arts, on undergraduate and graduate levels—across geographic and demographic boundaries, promotes civic engagement on behalf of open societies, and expands access to higher education for underserved communities.