NOAA CI Administrators Meeting

JISAO hosts first meeting for Cooperative Institute administrators

November 4-5, Seattle, WA

The Joint Institute for the Study of the Atmosphere and Ocean (JISAO) has served as a vital link between NOAA and the University of Washington (UW) since its inception in 1977. JISAO is one of 18 Cooperative Institutes (CIs) at 42 universities and research institutions across 23 states and the District of Columbia. NOAA hosts and leads an annual CI meeting at their headquarters in Silver Spring, MD that is attended by CI directors and administrators. This year, the CI administrators recognized the need to discuss, at length, the unique challenges of managing a Cooperative Institute. There has never been the time or the opportunity for this group to have a meeting of this nature - to visit another CI to see how it operates, to share information, and ask questions of each other to find solutions to common problems. Until now.

On November 4-5, 2010, JISAO hosted the first NOAA Cooperative Institute Administrators' Meeting at the University of Washington and the NOAA Pacific Marine Environmental Laboratory (PMEL) in Seattle. Representatives from fifteen CIs were in attendance. Opening remarks were given by Stephanie Harrington, Assistant Dean of the UW's College of the Environment, and Nick Bond, JISAO Associate Director. Attendees then dived into an ambitious agenda: discussing best practices, brainstorming on ways to improve how we work with stakeholders, and dealing with the challenges inherent in being asked to do more with fewer resources.

On the second day, Nick Bond, Keith Ronnholm, JISAO scientist, and Lauren Koellermeier, PMEL Outreach Coordinator, led a tour of NOAA's Pacific Marine Environmental Laboratory and discussed some of the wide-ranging research conducted by JISAO scientists at the NOAA facility.

In a wrap-up session, most agreed that the meeting was a great success and will likely become an annual event, with a different CI hosting each year. It was also decided that the valuable collaboration between the CIs could continue throughout the year via a website/blog and an e-mail list specifically for CI administrators.