Introduction and Rationale
The University of Ibadan recently celebrated its 64th anniversary as a premier tertiary institution providing education, training and services to future leaders of Nigeria and other countries of Africa. The comprehensive level of academic and professional training the University provides remain an essential component and cornerstone of efforts to meet the social and economic development agenda of the President of the Federal Republic of Nigeria. The number of current national and international leaders with laudable claim to 'roots' at the University of Ibadan and contributions they have made to national and international development represent unparalleled accolade among league of tertiary institutions in the region. The continued need for solid and vibrant academic foundations and experiences for the future leaders of the country and the role of the University of Ibadan to meet this need cannot be over emphasized. Successful achievement of this important mission however, rests on the shoulders of the faculty and staff of the University and ability of the University to maintain high scholastic standards among its staff. The University also requires the continuing support and collaborations of all stakeholders especially the national and state leaderships to continue to succeed in this mission.
The vision of the University of Ibadan is “to be a world-class institution for academic excellence geared towards meeting societal needs”. This vision is commensurate with the aspirations of the national leadership, the foundation of the University and her contributions to date. The University of Ibadan enjoys the benefit of an excellent faculty and staff and stands on a strong foundation of good scholastic standards necessary to attain this mission. The members of the faculty of the University have received valuable postgraduate training and acquired expertise in various fields of research and education from institutions in Nigeria and across the world. Each member of the faculty brings with her/him a wealth of ideas, vibrant energy and innovation for education, professional training and services that collectively make the University a leader among tertiary institutions. Ibadan has a large base of research support from both national and international organisations and has led research in various areas of human endeavors with strong emphasis on humanities, social sciences, arts, governance and health. A large number of the staff and faculty enjoy good international collaborations bringing recognition to the University. This premier position and its role in training future leaders for Nigeria and Africa demand that University of Ibadan continues to excel in all disciplines with special efforts devoted to:
- pioneer new frontiers in research, teaching and training,
- facilitate knowledge translation and applications to improve social, economic development and health of the nation,
- provide capacity building for national and state development and
- become a national repository of new ideas that can be taped by all stakeholders.
The faculty and staff of the University need to retain a high level of expertise. They must be up to date on current knowledge and achieve excellence in their chosen fields in order for the University to meet the obligations and expectations of its stakeholders. The retention of long term staff and infusion of young faculty underpin a need for the University to create a framework and platform to assist the faculty to rise up to this challenge. The University must broaden its research base and maintain vibrant international collaborations in order to provide continuing professional and career development (CPCD) for the faculty and staff to become leaders and recognized authorities in their fields.
The University of Ibadan has created a research foundation as a novel initiative to sustain the research base, strengthen the scholastic standards and support the staff in their aspirations to become leaders in their fields. The primary focus of the University of Ibadan Research Foundation (UIR-Foundation) is to award and manage research grants for the staff and faculty groups through peer-review systems. The UIR-Foundation will also provide frameworks to facilitate continuous scholarship and professional development of the staff in order for them to build on their primary training and gain new expertise. The ultimate goal of the UIR-Foundation is to support the faculty and staff in their efforts to undertake leading edge research and provide the best education to leaders of tomorrow who can use their knowledge from arts, basic, clinical, social and behavioral sciences, humanities, history, law and philosophy to address problems and challenges of our communities and the country in ways never before employed.