A Framework for the Management of Research and Innovation Projects in Academic Settings

José M.R.C.A. Santos, Carolina Varela, Enrique Martínez-Galán

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The contemporary complex settings under which research and innovation (R&I) activities are executed in academic institutions calls for the definition of suitable management and administration approaches. To this end, (1) the existing literature on the management of R&I projects in the academia is reviewed; (2) major specificities of R&I projects are discussed; (3) recent trends in project management are addressed; and (4) a specific framework for the management of R&I projects in higher education is proposed. The proposed management framework is defined in eight pillars, namely: (i) clarification of scope and goals; (ii) use of standards; (iii) scalability and flexibility; (iv) workflow modelling; (v) use of tools, techniques and templates; (vi) existence of a “project board” or similar; (vii) adequate risk management; and (viii) organizational learning. The authors argue that it should be seen as a practical tool for university managers and administrators to apply a structured and comprehensive overview of key action areas that will increase the effectiveness, efficiency and impact of R&I project management and administration in academic contexts.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)60-84
Number of pages25
JournalJournal of Research Administration
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2022


  • Higher education
  • Management framework
  • Project management
  • Research and innovation administration
  • Third mission


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