Appendix 4: Subvention Guidelines

When Dartmouth Medical School was re-established as a 4-year school in the 1970’s, most tenure-track/tenured faculty members hired into the basic science departments (e.g., Biochemistry, Pharmacology, Physiology, Microbiology) at Dartmouth Medical School (Geisel) were provided with approximately 50% subvention for compensation.

As the research-intensive faculty expanded, some of the basic science departments moved to a model in which central support for compensation for tenure-track/tenured faculty was less than 50%, creating disparities in the level of support among faculty members with similar obligations and expectations. These differences were in the mid-2000’s when subvention levels for tenure-track and tenured faculty in Biochemistry, Physiology, Pharmacology & Toxicology and Genetics and Microbiology & Immunology were uniformly adjusted to 50% (exclusive of faculty member who held tenure commitments made prior to 1993). These departments have been operating consistently on this principle of support for tenure-track and tenured faculty since that time.

Dartmouth Medical School also built successful research programs in clinical departments (e.g., Psychiatry and Community and Family Medicine), by expanding the numbers of faculty members who had substantive research, as well as clinical care, responsibilities. In most cases, individuals recruited into these Departments were not hired into the tenure-track and most commonly had minimal central subvention for their compensation.

The continued development of robust research programs outside of the basic science departments coupled with the substantial reorganization of the medical school following a) the formation of the Departments of Biomedical Data Science and Epidemiology in 2015, b) the restructuring of the academic enterprise in the clinical departments in 2016, and c) the revision of the Appointments, Promotions and Titles Policies in 2016, led to formulation of guidelines for providing subvention to faculty members in the Tenure-track/Tenured and Non-tenure Faculty Lines.

Budgeting for the increase in support for subvention to faculty members for whom such support had not previously been allocated has been built into the long-range financial plan established during the restructuring in 2015-2016 for the medial school and were implemented on July 1, 2016. The guidelines governing subvention support are enumerated below.

1. The level of compensation support (proportional to FTE) for faculty members (in any department) for whom a defined and ongoing level of subvention support was part of their employment contract (offer letter) or subsequent retention contract will not be reduced except under the conditions set forth in the Geisel Policy on Compensation and Research Support, the Geisel Policy on Tenure or by broad-based institutional changes in policies governing compensation support for faculty as approved by the Dean or, when required, the Board of Trustees of Dartmouth College.

2. At the current time, the guidelines enumerated below do not apply to individuals appointed or recruited to faculty positions in the Department of Medical Education since faculty members in Med Ed are provided subvention under different guidelines than set forth below.

3. Enhanced subvention support will be provided for research-intensive faculty who were not originally hired into conventional (e.g., ~50% subvened) faculty lines.

The criteria below are intended to guide discussions between the Dean and the Chair in considering increased subvention support for compensation for faculty members. These criteria are not absolute: The Dean and the Chair will need to be in agreement that a faculty member’s contributions warrant an increase in subvention based not only on concrete factors such as Modified Total Direct Costs (MTDC), but other less quantifiable metrics that may also be relevant to a determination for central support.

  • Individuals hired in either the Non-tenure or Tenure-track/Tenure Line without a defined level of subvention or a defined subvention level below 50% who hold the ranks of Assistant Professor, Associate Professor or Professor and who have an expectation for/evidence of a sustained (>3 year) history or documented commitment (e.g., Notice of Award) of externally funded support at a level of ~250,000/year in MTDCs from grants or contracts to Dartmouth College for sponsored research in which they are principal investigator (PI) or multiple-PI on those awards may qualify to have their subvention increased to 50%. Upon receipt of this subvention support, these individuals will (unless there are explicit exceptions approved by the Dean) also be expected to demonstrate a sustained commitment to teaching and service comparable to that of Tenure-track/Tenure Line faculty subvened at 50%. Individuals receiving this level of subvention will also be expected to meet scholarship criteria consistent with academic line and rank (as set out in the document Academic Appointments Promotions and Titles at the Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth). Individuals who are responsible for the conception and writing individual projects as project leaders of large grants (e.g., Program Project Grants [PPG]) may qualify if awards are made. Being named internally as a project leader on a PPG or other comparable mechanism (awarded to another PI) following receipt of a grant/award will not qualify. As noted above (Section IIB.2), such subvention is not made in perpetuity and is contingent upon a continued level of maintained support. Unless otherwise noted through a revised letter from the Geisel Administration, renewal is subject to review each fiscal year.
  • Individuals hired in either the Non-tenure or Tenure-track/Tenure Line without a defined level of subvention or a subvention level below 25% who hold the ranks of Assistant Professor, Associate Professor and Professor and who have an expectation for/evidence of current and sustained (> 3 years; e.g., Notice of Award) history of serving as key personnel (with substantive efforts as PI or co-investigator; co-I), at a minimum level of 150,000 in MTDCs from grants or contracts to Dartmouth College for sponsored research may have their subvention increased to 25%. Such individuals are also expected to perform service and teaching consistent with this level of central support, and to meet scholarship criteria consistent with academic line and rank.
  • Individuals whose subvention level is increased beyond the level set out in their offer letter may have the level decreased to that original amount if they do not sustain the level of performance that was the basis for the increase. Decisions regarding any reduction in support shall only occur after consultation with the faculty member’s department chair, and the final authority for such decisions shall remain with the Dean.
  • Individuals who receive either 25% or 50% subvention are excluded from receiving additional support from Geisel for teaching in the undergraduate medical education or graduate programs (Masters and/or PhD) at Geisel without approval from the Dean (this does not preclude support for teaching for other entities—e.g., Arts and Sciences [A&S])

4. De minimis subvention support will be provided to research-intensive, Non-tenure Line faculty members who have not established a robust, nationally recognized research program, but who have expectations of serving as PI or co-PI on sponsored programs within the missions of Geisel. Specifically, in order to be in compliance with the US Government Code of Federal Regulations (CFR), faculty members, de minimis subvention support for compensation (5%) may be provided to the following faculty members.

  • Faculty members at the rank of Assistant Professor, Associate Professor and Professor who were hired with no commitment of subvention and who do not meet the criteria set out in Part I, if they are committed at an aggregate of ~50% effort (6 person-months) as PI or co-I on sponsored awards (whether federal or non-federal). Such individuals may be important to the efforts of numerous team-based programs that are not necessarily all part of a coherent and unified research program.
  • Junior faculty members who may not yet have attained 50% support at PI or co-I multiple team-based awards, and both the Dean and the Chair are in agreement that such individuals are on the appropriate trajectory to meet this expectation.
  • Except under limited circumstances (e.g., specific funding mechanisms), Instructors are not eligible for subvention and must be supported 100% through grants or allowable departmental/core facility, or institutional funds. All exceptions to provide a de minimis level of subvention (5%) for Instructors must be approved by the Dean and must be consistent for Geisel’s expectations for that individual to develop a robust and recognizable research program in their current role.
  • Individuals who receive only 5% subvention shall not be asked to perform more than a de minimis level of teaching or service (i.e., no more than 1-2 hours of teaching or a single committee assignment per year) unless specifically contracted for these activities.
  • If individuals receiving 5% subvention are contracted to teach in specific Geisel-hosted courses (e.g. TDI, QBS, Med Ed), direct salary support for these teaching efforts will be considered as qualified.

5. Levels of subvention support for Chairs and Endowed Professorships will be provided according to guidelines as given below.

Just as there has been a historical lack of uniformity of subvention support for compensation for research-intensive faculty members, guidelines and uniformity in providing subvention support for compensation to departmental Chairs has also been lacking.

Many Chairs, but also non-chairs, also hold endowed professorships. While historical practice for the awarding of and distribution from endowed professorships has not being changed, as part of the revisions of these documents (2017), guidelines below are memorialized in order to assure uniform support and expectations for faculty members who take on leadership roles as Chairs, and to clarify expectations for distributions from endowed professorships for individuals who hold these professorships (whether departmental chairs or not):

  • Unless otherwise stated in their offer letters, departmental chairs will receive 70% subvention for their compensation during the time that they hold the departmental chair position. At the time the departmental chair is relinquished, and except where stipulated otherwise in department chair offer letters or otherwise agreed to by the Dean, subvention support for compensation for former department chairs shall be set at 50%, provided they continue in to engage in academic activities (e.g. research, teaching) commensurate with this level of support (see Section I, bullet #1).
  • In all cases, levels of subvention support for compensation for individuals stepping down from serving as departmental chairs will not be lower than stipulated in the offer letters except under conditions set forth in the Geisel Policy on Compensation and Research Support, the Geisel Policy on Tenure or by broad-based institutional changes in policies governing compensation support for faculty as approved by the Dean, or when required, the Board of Trustees of Dartmouth College.
  • For faculty members who have been awarded an endowed professorship, funds from those professorships will first and foremost be governed by the Statements of Understanding (SOUs) that established the funds. For the majority of professorships at Geisel, the distributed income from the endowed professorship is intended to provide a supportive academic environment for the incumbent, and the funds are used wholly by Geisel to support existing subvention commitments to salary and other supports (space, grants management infrastructure, etc.) for the incumbent. The awarding of a professorship, unless otherwise agreed to by the Dean or stipulated explicitly in the SOU, shall not serve to increase the level of subvention provided to the incumbent.
  • Distribution for programmatic use beyond compensation for the holder of the professorship varies with each individual fund and is not covered by the guidelines enumerated herein.