University of South Florida Sarasota-Manatee



Ross DuBose ready to help faculty at USF Sarasota-Manatee boost their research work

By Marc R. Masferrer, University Communications and Marketing

When Ross DuBose was studying for his doctorate in pharmacology at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, he witnessed what he described as the “fragility” of the academic research system.

A research project, he said, can fail if just one of its multiple moving parts — such as the publication process or the acquisition and maintaining of grant funding that keeps a lab running — stalls. Wanting to help researchers manage and overcome those challenges, DuBose embarked on a career path that recently landed him at University of South Florida Sarasota-Manatee as the new assistant director of research and innovation.

“I was very frustrated with that experience in grad school,” DuBose said. “When I finished grad school, I didn't apply for post-docs, which would be the normal next step if you wanted to continue a research career. I went looking specifically for opportunities where I could work on doing anything to help that system, that broken cycle.”

Ross DuBose

Ross DuBose is assistant director of research and innovation at USF Sarasota-Manatee.

DuBose spent a decade at Research Square, a company that provides academic researchers and journals with a variety of publication-related services, including during the peer-review process by helping find other researchers to review the work.

“Peer review is critical for the integrity of research publications, but it can be the source of so much frustration due to delays and miscommunication. The goal was to speed things up and alleviate some of that frustration.” DuBose said.

Helping faculty members at USF Sarasota-Manatee through the research process by, for example, serving as a conduit for information about grant opportunities, is the focus of DuBose’s work at USF Sarasota-Manatee.

“We are so fortunate to have someone with Dr. DuBose’s skills and experiences leading our efforts to continue to grow the research enterprise on our campus,” said Regional Chancellor Karen Holbrook. “I am confident that our faculty will benefit from working with him to identify funding and other support for their work and to further enrich the culture of research at USF Sarasota-Manatee that Sandy Justice has built. I also look forward to how he will help support our students’ research work.”

Justice, who led the research office at USF Sarasota-Manatee for more than seven years, is now director of the USF Research Development Institute.

“The faculty is going to love working with Dr. DuBose,” Justice said. “During his career, he has a developed a deep understanding of the research process, from acquiring and keeping funding to the ups and downs of having research published. He will be a tremendous resource as the Sarasota-Manatee campus grows as a research powerhouse.”

DuBose, who grew up in Gainesville and earned a bachelor’s degree in chemistry from the University of Florida, said this is an exciting time to join the research office as USF prepares to mark the one-year anniversary of its admission into the elite Association of American Universities. He said USF is well-positioned to further elevate its reputation as a research institution.

“If you were just going to design a university and give it all the advantages, you would essentially design USF,” DuBose said. “You'd put it in a large metropolitan area with a large alumni base and a large local business infrastructure to interact with. You would give it a world-class medical center to anchor the life sciences and broad faculty expertise to address as many research areas as possible.”

Those advantages, he said, extend to the Sarasota-Manatee campus, which already has fostered close connections with the area’s business community.

“My highest priority here is getting to know all the faculty, finding out what their research is, finding out what they're interested in expanding their research into,” DuBose said. “We're a small enough research institution here, a small enough campus, that I can meet everyone personally and have some idea of what they are interested in."

DuBose said AAU membership reaffirms the success of research at USF and that faculty members, including at the Sarasota-Manatee campus, would enjoy the rewards of the recognition.

“The folks at funding agencies know what it means to be an AAU member,” DuBose said. “When someone puts ‘USF’ in a grant application, there’s that association that USF is a great research institution.” 

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