The purpose of the Doherty Professorship in Ocean Utilization is to provide development opportunities through research support for selected non-tenured MIT faculty members.
The Doherty Professorship was established to encourage young faculty members to apply their expertise to the development of meaningful uses of the seas for the benefit of this country and mankind. We believe the capabilities and enthusiasm of the Institute’s non-tenured faculty members will contribute to solve the problems currently faced in ocean utilization and coastal zone development. Faculty versed in these areas are of particular importance in teaching students that factual knowledge must be coupled with the ability to find workable solutions that are compatible with societal needs.
A grant to MIT from Henry L. and Grace Doherty Charitable Foundation, Inc. has established a fund to support the Henry L. Doherty Professorships in Ocean Utilization.
Persons interested in an ocean-related issue and holding an MIT assistant professor or non-tenured associate professor appointment in any academic department may be nominated for the Doherty Professorship, as long as they do not hold another MIT-funded chair concurrent with the Doherty.
NOMINATION AND SELECTION PROCEDURE
MIT Sea Grant accepted nominations through December 13, 2021. Nomination of a non-tenured faculty member for the Doherty Professorship must be submitted by the head of his/her academic department. Each department may nominate up to two non-tenured faculty members each year.
The nomination is to be in writing and presented in four parts:
- a description of the research or study program proposed by the nominee,
- an annual budget for each year of support requested,
- the professional resume of the nominee, and
- an evaluation and endorsement by their department head.
The research program description should include a statement of the program’s objectives, an outline of the planned approach, and an explanation of the need for the proposed research (why it is important). The applicant is to indicate in the research description any current or past funding he or she has had in the area of the proposed research. Even though a faculty member may be well established in one field, the Doherty provides an opportunity to branch into a new area. The nomination, evaluation and endorsement by the department head is the first step in the selection process.
The second step in the selection process is the review of nominations by a committee appointed and chaired by the MIT Sea Grant Program Director. The MIT Sea Grant Director will select four faculty members from among the Institute faculty at large to assist in the final selection of the winning candidate for the Doherty. These faculty members will be recruited on the basis of their broad interests in the marine, environmental, and coastal areas. The Director will summarize the results of their review and recommendations regarding the final award and present these findings to the Provost for final approval.
Selection will be based primarily on the nomination statement, on the relevance of the proposed research to important issues; potential applicability of the results; and the professional benefit to the recipient. It is intended that the Professorship provide seed research support in new and significant marine-related subjects.
The Doherty Professorship will be awarded for a two-year period effective on July 1 following the appointment. Requests for nominations will be sent to all department heads in the previous fall, and appointments will be made early in the spring term of each year.
Each Professorship will provide funding at the level of $25,000 per year for two years. Overhead is not charged on the funding but salary charges are subject to employee benefits. When used for salary and employee benefits for the academic year, these funds cannot be used by the cognizant department or accounting center. The funds granted may be used for the non-general fund share of the recipient’s salary, and for the following support items: the salary of a research assistant and/or a secretary, domestic travel, and materials and service. Also, foreign travel and research equipment may be supported if specifically identified in the original project outline and approved in the final selection action.
The Professorship will be funded through an account established by the MIT Sea Grant College Program office.
Each Doherty Professor will present a written annual report to the Director of the MIT Sea Grant College Program by 1 August of each year. This report will summarize the work performed, results achieved, publications made and plans for the next year (when applicable). Technical reports and journal articles should be published in cooperation with the MIT Sea Grant Program.