Expectations for Kansas Geological Survey Scientists
The Kansas Legislature authorizes the University of Kansas ". . . to make as far as possible a complete geological survey of the state of Kansas, giving special attention to any and all natural products of economic importance . . . and to prepare reports on the same." The Kansas Geological Survey (KGS), a non-academic unit of the University of Kansas, is charged with fulfilling that role. The KGS mission is to conduct statewide geological studies and research and to collect, correlate, preserve, and disseminate information leading to a better understanding of the geology of Kansas, with special emphasis on natural resources of economic value, water quality and quantity, and geologic hazards. The following document defines the expectations of KGS scientists within the context of this mission. This document begins with a general statement of expectations for all scientists, then specifies expectations according to rank. These expectations are general guidelines and can be modified by the Director under special circumstances.
Expectations for KGS Scientists
KGS scientists should strive to develop a national and international reputation for research on geologic issues of relevance to the state of Kansas. That reputation should be based on the following:
Leadership--KGS scientists must develop an independent Kansas-based research program. Scientists are expected to lead research programs; while cooperation between scientists at the KGS and elsewhere is strongly encouraged, work that supports other programs should not be the primary objective for any KGS scientist.
Publications--KGS scientists are expected to generate formal publications in respected, peer-reviewed outlets. Publication in upper-tier, peer-reviewed outlets is required to demonstrate the soundness of research ideas and results, and to establish the stature of KGS research programs and scientists. Publication in KGS peer-reviewed outlets is particularly encouraged for issues that are especially relevant to the State.
Service--Service to the State and profession is expected of every KGS scientist. The degree of service should increase as the scientist advances in rank and gains experience. Representative service activities include providing technical advice to the legislature, State agencies, and the public; performing technical reviews for scientific journals and funding agencies; serving as an editor for professional journals; serving as an officer in a professional society; and teaching at the university or post-graduate level.
External Funding--All KGS scientists should seek external funding to enhance their research programs. Although acquisition of funds through a competitive peer-reviewed process is an important and independent verification of the value of an individual's research program, external funding is no substitute for scientific publication.
Probationary Review--All incoming KGS scientists must complete a probationary review period (six years for assistant scientists, three years for associate or senior scientists). Although the probationary review period has a defined maximum length, non-renewal of contract (i.e., termination) can occur before the end of the period. Failure to meet the following expectations at each rank will result in termination.
Promotion is not automatic or simply the result of duration in rank. Promotion is, instead, recognition of meritorious performance. Excellence in research and service will always be the primary promotion criteria for KGS scientists.
Assistant Scientists at the KGS are expected to develop a strong Kansas-based research program.
Criteria for Promotion to Associate Scientist
Leadership--The individual should have developed an independent, Kansas- based research program of national stature by the end of the sixth year at the KGS.
Publications--The individual should produce the requisite number of high-quality peer-reviewed publications that will allow them to establish a national reputation. Publication in upper-tier, peer-reviewed outlets is particularly important.
Service--The individual's research program should serve as the basis for significant service contributions to the State and profession. In the latter years at this rank, the individual must begin to build a record of this service.
External Funding--The individual should be successful in acquiring external funds for the further development of their Kansas-based research program. The acquisition of competitive external funding is an important measure that reflects directly on the stature of an individual's research program.
Associate Scientists at the KGS are expected to lead Kansas-based research programs of national stature and of increasing visibility internationally. In addition, they are expected to play an increasing role of service to the KGS, State, and profession.
Criteria for Promotion to Senior Scientist
Leadership--The individual should lead a strong, Kansas-based research program that is recognized nationally and internationally.
Publications--The individual should produce the requisite number of peer- reviewed publications that will allow them to establish a national and international reputation.
Service--The individual should have a strong record of service to the KGS, State, and profession.
External Funding--The individual should have a strong track record of acquiring competitive external funding to enhance their research program.
Senior Scientists at the KGS should be internationally recognized leaders in their respective specialty areas and must maintain an active program of research to remain so.
Leadership--The individual should lead a well-developed, Kansas-based research program that maintains a strong national and international reputation.
Publications--Individuals should provide the requisite number of high-quality peer-reviewed publications that will allow them to maintain a national and international reputation. In addition, they have a critical responsibility to archive their collective knowledge and experience through various written communications. These will likely become information legacies that reflect decades of important work to the State, and must be preserved for posterity.
Service--Individuals should be recognized leaders in service activities at the KGS, State, and professional levels, and should be role models and mentors for junior staff. Their most critical service responsibility is to use their experience and knowledge to help position the KGS, State, and their subdiscipline to meet the challenges of the future.
External Funding--The individual should maintain a strong record of acquiring competitive external funding.