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Researchers Get One Stop For University-Wide Data Systems

October 4, 2005

A new software initiative that ultimately will allow researchers to use one source to access data from research, financial and human resource systems is now up and running.

Since the programming began in March, SNUPER (Sophisticated Northwestern University Portal for Enterprise Research) now has the capability to view financial, salary and administrative data for all awards dating back to 1997. Data also may be downloaded in a PDF or Excel format. In addition, the ability for researchers to give their award access to other users -- a high priority for many researchers at the university – has just been developed.

SNUPER, formerly the Research Data Integration & Access (RDIA) project, has come a long way since its goals were outlined in the early months of 2004 by advisory, faculty and staff committees. The main goal is to give researchers a web-based system that will provide integrated research data from current and planned enterprise systems.

SNUPER staff, including Director Candy Poolman, five developers and two business analysts, has been meeting with departments to introduce the application to the University.

"Faculty often want to know which accounts have money available for purchases or personnel and which do not,” says Peter Stair, professor of chemistry and chair of the advisory committee. “Now, for the first time it is possible for faculty to view the financial information in all of their accounts -- in one place -- in an easily understandable form. Both summary and detailed information are available as desired. This really facilitates the planning and decision making process."

The SNUPER team is appreciative of the assistance and input provided by faculty and staff across the University and will continue to develop new functionality, using feedback from researchers to make improvements based on user needs. The testers, members of the Northwestern community, will try out all the new developments before they are deployed to the production application.

As SNUPER continues to develop, access to data from several systems will be added to the application. That will include access to student data, space data, human and animal subject protocol and effort reporting. Reporting capability will also be enhanced as well as searching, sorting and filtering capabilities.

SNUPER can be accessed at https://snuper.northwestern.edu. The team can be contacted at 847-491-7702 or snuper@northwestern.edu with any questions, comments, or to set up a demonstration for a department. 

Topics: University News